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  • Flowers for My Mother, and: Sunny Morning, February
  • Carolyn Miller (bio)

Flowers for My Mother

All through my childhood and on every visit homeI went into the woods and along the blacktop roads,picking flowers for my mother. I brought them backto the house—wild roses, daisies, violets, redbud,honeysuckle, the tiny white ones that turn into beggar's lice—trailing petals and dirt and insects across the floor,and put them in a vase and set them on the dining table,where they slowly died, dropping leaves and pollenand pistils and tiny hairs on the shining surface, bringingold news from the growing world.

Sunny Morning, February

And then I realized that spring was here, that the plumtrees and tulip trees and acacias had been blooming for weeksin the cold and the fog,

that though it was late, Chinese New Yearwas almost here, and for a while, maybe no one else I lovedwould die, that I should go out

and make my way among the peoplebuying pomelos and quince blossoms, feeling the sun on my faceboth for myself and for those who no longer could,

and I walked out into my ghost-filled city,and it shone. [End Page 131]

Carolyn Miller

Carolyn Miller is a poet and painter based in San Francisco. Her most recent book of poems is Light, Moving (Sixteen Rivers P), and her poetry awards include the James Boatwright III Prize for Poetry from Shenandoah and the Rainmaker Award from Zone 3.



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