December rose

Clutched against the snow a militant rose holds onto sleep, and dreams…
And it’s perfect just like that but you still want to know the ambiguity of its unopened bud
So you cover your eyes and count to ten then turn around
But it’s quiet the way you like it with just the wind scattering its dust among the skinny branches

Still you want to know where it went,
The secret of the tight-lipped rose
And sit beside her in the dark of noiseless speculation,
Waiting and watching for something to happen, catching every snowflake in the beam of your unwavering gaze
As it falls and sizzles on her pink satin lids
Trailing silver one by one
Like the slow and steady breath of snails or the stream of notes left behind
An evening sung

At some point the bud gets buried in the snow’s frozen ash
Immortalizing the poise and delicate beauty of her sleep
And it seems like she may live forever in the gentle palm of winter
And for a time she does
But when the snow melts revealing petals softly withered, tinged with gray,
Fallen open like a hand catching raindrops on a cloudy day,
Sleep has been released in the parting of her eyes
And awoken a galaxy of stars in the month of an undisclosed night.

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