One day, she plants a great tree in the image of man, culled tiny brown seeds taken from cored bounties leftover, pies baked and eaten warm. She moves fingers through rich soil, spayed earth moist and gathering under nails; places each polished hope, gingerly. Nestled in the corner, guarded by old weathered legs, crossed keepers of the rains and snows and sun-dappled summers. Starling's golden tritons between blacktop brambles all gorging till beaks come away berry-stained and full. She waters his roots with her purple can, speaks to him in kind while trimming long blades with shears, laughing at herself, to him, and blushes cheeks into apples. She drips ruby nectar down his throat stolen from the hummer's bell feeder when his branches begin, buds curling out, and iridescent bodies swirl around her, new northern lights. When he comes to her strong and constant, she lies beneath him, rusty fingers reach to touch her face, gold tears floating in the brush of reality. And she reads him volumes of Poe and Pound, questions the universe and space, knowing he won't ever answer her the truth, but attempt every time. He is there when seasons turn, their heart growing, in him and he never pushes her back or away, and she will smile, one day.
Aleathia Drehmer 2008
Published by Shoots and Vines 12/08