I opened books of ancient flowers,
compared my bruises to blossoms faded
with the course of centuries.
Sometimes I would find between the pages
a wilted photograph of a couple seated
side by side
in their wedding car, all
white smiles and sleek-tongued optimism.
Other times I
counted the words on each of the pages
and saved their numbers on my phone.
Jasmin de Virginie.
Narcisse des poétes.
And the shadow crept around
the sundial like a dancing planet.
I kissed each hanging head of the lavender plant
until it bloomed again.
I let my lashes stroke down
the jasmine bushes in the garden.
I froze edible flowers into ice cubes
only to obverse them melting down my naked thighs,
the cat greedily licking
the water off my toes;
her tongue a trickling leaf against my
whilst you bruised me
I watched the wet petals on the floor
convolving, again and again
their hearts limp and
scared, as if the universe
somehow might not have enough space for them.