Winter 2006-7

Tom Rechtin


the flowers are beginning
to change: like leaves

I'd think,
if it weren't for the fact
they were pink

already, and the green's
encroaching from
the outside, as if the heat

of another summer
were doing its best
to reverse the whole process

of blooming, confuse the plant
whose name I have already,
incidentally, forgot.

Or have I? But I haven't
forgotten to water it,
and as the invisible fluid

slips right through the soil
as if there were a trap
with a magnet

inside of it, drawing
the heaviness of lead
into its roots, which

may be the only thing
keeping the flowers
from dying

for all I know, I wonder,
what ever happened
to roses? Cut,

they fade:
there's a comfort in that.
And a challenge

in knowing
if you hang them
upside down, they'll keep forever.

Tom Rechtin earned a PhD in English from Binghamton University where he won both the AWP Intro Award for poetry and the College Poet's Prize. He is currently teaching English at Slippery Rock University in Slippery Rock, PA, and has poems upcoming or recently published in Sycamore Review, Notre Dame Review, Lake Effect, GSU Review, Abbey, The Amherst Review, and The Paterson Literary Review



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