Little Withered Flowers
Jesse Breite

                     All flesh is grass,
                     and all its beauty is like the flower
                     of the field 
                                          —Isaiah 40:6

I ask Jane about the scarlet-red scars
covering her hands and wrists.
She looks at me over her sunglasses.

Jane doesn’t say it. Like mom,
she keeps the sharper confessions
blunted in implication.

Mom’s wearied voice gets softer.
Her suffering is sacred.
Dad refuses the scars; he chooses

to see a daughter’s tender skin.
But I see. I touch them with my eyes;
they are little withered flowers.

Unspoken roots spread.

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