Mum's the Word

Laurel Devitt

It took a day or two
for me to realize the mums
on the dining table
gossiped about me.

I did a double take
when I saw the staring blooms
with maroon moon faces
and white whiskers.

The ones in the middle
sat whispering,
so I moved to the table
to listen.

One said, “She isn’t the one
who cut us down.”  “No,”
said the other, “Are
we here to die?”

“So that’s it!” said the first
experiencing an epiphany.
“This is a nursing home,
A hospice.  We are here to die.”

I could not talk them out of it,
I knew it to be true.
“Hurry,” I murmured to myself,
“fresh water, more light.”

In the window and deep in drink,
their round heads stretched toward the light.
I sat with them for days discussing
sun worship and the power of rain.

We talked and laughed, became friends.
They said they looked forward
to their next life as fertile soil.
I promised I’d look them up.

 Laurel Devitt

Laurel Devitt

Laurel lives and writes among the lovely bluffs and rivers of La Crosse.  Inspiration is everywhere.