In Lieu of Flowers
I have five wraths.
One is blue. It is as blue
as large stones of western turquoise.
It is a well-strung wrath.
One is red. In a child’s nightmare, it is the bright red cat
that eats a pink baby mouse, still blind and hairless.
One is pure white. It is deceitful and stinks more than any other wrath. It rises like billowy clouds from industrial chimneys, takes paint off walls, skin off faces. It can leave permanent scars on the retina and tongue.
One is green. Few wraths in this world are green. But I have one.
One is purple. Made of thick-skinned grapes that grow wild on country fences and the violet eyes that watched me suck out the pulp and spit the seeds.
These wraths could kill me.
Or, they will fall into the grave with my ashes,
grow up as
white asters, irises,
tangles of miniature roses
or a dark green vine.
--Bonnie Roberts, copyright, 2011
Causes Bonnie Roberts Supports
The Southern Poverty Law Center, The National Resource Defense Council, The ACLU, Doctors without Borders, Save Darfur