Breathe Me In
Do you hear him? Claws scrape away at rotting bark.
He’s whimpering as eucalyptus branches swat his hide.
Panting mint leaf breaths
that he is never able to give back.
Do you hear him? As he tramples through daisy fields.
Breaking up sunflower seeds under callused paws. Listen, as he whispers an
empty song. It’s cold and hard like cement walls he keeps creating to
push petals out.
Can you see him? Black, white shift with gray strands as he
hunches over his shadow. He’s been blind for a while now, as
Pollen has planted rose thorns into his eyes and you hear him
weep maple sap as he tries to claw them out of his hollow sockets.
If only someone had told him once roses are cut down they grow back stronger,
he’s getting weaker,
can’t remember the last time his skin hadn’t been polluted with mayflowers.
Before dawn, he plucks them out with his teeth,
gnashing toxic nectar between acid-worn molars.
Now they don’t stop, grow back on contact.
Grapevines have wrapped themselves between sharp fangs
and he can feel dandelions bloom in his kidneys.
Those same rose thorns have travelled to his heart,
carving reluctant apologies into his tissue.
As poison ivy wraps around his lungs, he thought back and knew
he should have taken better care of his garden.