Why do we call pretty phrases


when poems can be ugly?

I suppose poems have a way of seeing things differently,

and words become something else altogether.


Pretty phrases are strings of flowers tied together with honey.

The bright colors attract you,

and you can barely hope to guess their meaning,

as the writer sometimes only hints at what they want you

to pick up.


The dandelion, not the rose. No one promised you beauty.


Lick your fingers clean after you peel the petals away,

as the pollen burrows under your fingernails.

You’ll remember it in three hours, when you realize the stains look like blood,

and you cannot build the shredded pieces back into a home.


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