The Flower and the Boot

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And the flower looked up, her petals curled in puzzlement and dismay
Why? Why did you step on me, good sir?
I opened all my petals for you.
I gave to you my sweetest and most pleasing fragrance
I tilted my face to greet you as if you were the sun
I wilted a little each time you stepped away,
Only a little so you’d know you were missed
Not so much you’d think I couldn’t bloom without you

There was a time you couldn’t get enough of me
My lushness and my nectar
My unique design
I only wanted to make you happy
And now you’ve crushed me
I may never recover
The least you could do is tell me why you’ve injured me so

The man stood silent
His face blank as a moonless sky
I am finished with you, he said bluntly
I still want you to like me
I’d even like you to bloom for me
And to turn your face in my direction
But I don’t want you

I don’t want to feed and water you
Or to take any responsibility
I just like knowing you are still there
For me
I don’t know how to leave anything better off than when I found it
And though I’ve said it wouldn’t bother me,
I don’t really want you turning your face toward anybody else

He examined his boot
And besides, he whispered
Though I strive to be compassionate
I’ve always been careless
So cut me some slack little flower
Can’t you see I’m doing my best?
Can’t you see I’m busy doing things
with my life?
Can’t you see I’m busy looking outward for inner happiness?

The flower drooped
But her petals bristled with anger
No, she said
That’s not good enough
I deserve better than that

He considers her reaction
And does not like it
This flower he no longer wants
But cares so much about
Refusing to be compliant
She won’t accept rejection
Won’t go away AND stay as he wishes

He glares at her, indignant
I don’t have time for this, he pronounces
And his boot comes down again

As she cringes , still defiant
The wind catches the little flower
And she dances away just in time
Her petals ringing like truthful bells
Telling all his stories
Sending them off on the wind
Even if she doesn’t recover
He won’t get away with it
Not completely
The wind will tell

Still, as she blows away
A soft, sweet fragrance lingers
And she turns her best face to him
Decorated with dewdrops that travel slowly ‘cross it
And drop to the ground behind her
Leaving a trail that he might follow
With his heart instead of his boots

LM 2014/2016

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