Fear has not yet occurred to them, nor ambition.
Reason they have not yet thought of
Neither do they ask how long they must be roses, and then what.
Or any other foolish question. Mary Oliver

Evening bids me
to my rose garden.
Orchestra of blooms
without human trappings
play free in curl of breeze.
Each blush—
a tracing of the other.

Olfactory delights staccato
from crimson petals.
Pungency tethers me
to present moment.
Feel I have steeped
into their fragrance.

Briar-families encourage
incubating buds
support others
in their nocturne
time of life.
None immune
to the calendar

She grabs my stare.
Still anchored
still thorny independent.
Wind quivers her.
Petals flutter-fragile
then float
to requiem-repose.
Ground-grave looks
like splashes of blood

What can I write
for this dying rose
that would not insult
with its triviality?

Marianne Lyon taught music for 43 years. After teaching in Hong Kong, she returned to the Napa Valley and is published in The Ravens Perch, TWJM Magazine, and Earth Daughters, among others. Nominated for the Pushcart prize in 2017, she is a member of the California Writers Club, and Adjunct Professor at Touro University.