Iím at the edge of the garden
in a white nightgown embroidered with lilies.
This keeps happening without my permission;
a sleepwalk, a runaway.
The scent of my best perfume
kneels beside me here. I sift through the soil
where I have noticed green Ė
perhaps this is a metaphor for the flesh--
on the White Hellebore. It smudges my thumb
in the wanton sap-start of spring.
Since there is no one here to forbid it,
I gather the fists of petal to my face.
Since there is no one, I kiss them open
as if Iíve already flown away,
flown from blood-rivers and cages of bone
beyond the shudder of petals on the rich loam floor.
Tigerlily, Calla, Stargazer. A cardinal trailing stars.
Cheryl Snell is the author of three chapbooks: FLOWER HALF BLOWN (Finishing
Line Press), EPITHALAMION (Little Poem Press) and SAMSARA, forthcoming from
Pudding House Press. Her novel, SHIVA'S ARMS (The Writer's Lair Books), is
now available at the publisher's website.