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Names of Flowers


There is a flower on my phone
Painted by Marilyn Manson.
When I was younger I thought
He was handsome, read his book,

Found his art. For someone so dark
He made me laugh when I wasn’t banging
My head through the air. There was a night
For two hours where I got to stare at his hairy thighs.

They were very white against the black
Of the leather that held his parts in place.
My crush was at the show but the man on stage
Could have stolen my first kiss and Billy
Wouldn’t have been missed at all.

Years later neither man exists in my life–
I have my soul-mirror beside me. I like softer music.
For some reason Manson’s flower never left

My mind. It reminds me that darkness can be beautiful
And is not something to be tucked away or
Hidden or ignored. A flower taught me to explore
Corners of myself that made my mother cry–

The poems of my childhood were not rainbows and
Sunshine. They were wilting flowers.
It was their right. Despite all my love for my mother
There was a man who blocked out all light.

I learned you teach a child to want to die
With your words. You hurt the person they love most.
You drink. You make them think something is wrong
With them because you have no art to hold your darkness

Outside of the fight. You paint your picture
In expletives and fill in color with fists.
There is red that turns to purple that turns to blue
So that when the woman is asked

By men in suits if you hit her
The picture is the shape of having a fall–
When the child is called as a witness and told to lie
Smiling with her pen is not an option.

There is a flower in my hair and a dozen
On my dresser. People think they’re pretty.
They make people smile. They are my secret
Joke–they grow from a seed called irony.


This entry was posted in: poetry

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