JOURNEYS, PART 17, THE BRIGHT RED ROSE

Rough round that rose bordered hem we ran,
regardless of where her skirts did scurry,
no fretting to the fraying of her fringes,
never noticing how nimble had turned to not-so nifty
above that border of red roses, oh so pretty…

We carried you, like a child, that day,
winter now withered as the bark
made a place for the bloom and I wondered
if April had ever held so soft a day?

Rough round that rose bordered hem
we ran, regardless…

We carried you, like a child, that day,
the old village hushed as if all had now
been said, as if all had since been seen
and I wondered if that stillness amid all
the emotion was your soul on the breeze.

Rough round that rose bordered hem
we ran, remembering…

We carried you, like a child, that day,
our toes retracing your well worn
steps, our memory meandering
through the journeys you found for us
on busses and trains on lanes
to foreign towns and holy lands.

Rough round that rose bordered hem
we ran, reverberating…

We carried you, like a child, that day
and remembered every knee you bandaged,
every tear you had dried and every belly
you filled with your apple pies and custard bakes
those fresh brown breads and coffee cakes.

Rough round that rose bordered hem
we ran, repeating…

We carried you, like a child, that day
as red roses fell from our hearts like tears
as that breeze brushed our cheeks like a kiss.

Rough round that rose bordered hem
we ran, in reverence…

We carried you, like a child, that day,
your body as weightless as it was lifeless
as we covered you in the red petaled ground.

You carried us all, in your arms,
and now we carry you in our hearts
along our journeys forever more.

By that bed, in the village
that housed you and still holds you,
hemmed in forever by a border
of bright red roses, we sighed
by those borders now broken
by all we took for granted,

and felt the touch of the torn
comes at the fall of that one bright rose.

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

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