Breaking from the Root

Lauren Sakol


That scarlet blares bright when

her stems have grown ripe and

she sits at the backs of her ankles

until the sun creeps behind the trees.

Twenty-thick years of nerves,

weaved snugly with strands of

both fervor and defeat

stand severed in the span of a day.

But as these sprouts from the ground

distend towards the sky,

she feels less and less like

she'll ever unfold again.

Red rings above her elbows

sting like shackles and taunt her,

whispering of petals rarely ever seen

while beads of water break

on her skin and roll out a rhythm;

vexation will never be redeemed.

Branches tap morse code on the pane,

this won't wash off in the rain.

The sharp tinge of blue that

coats her eyes is made smoother

by medicine that tags

her breath "in danger"

but as the sobs--once choked--grow

smooth, begin to soothe

like a slow, sad song

and since the night is long,

her mind assigns

the blood in her ears a steady beat,

and her sore eyes ease closed

as she rocks herself to sleep.

Euphemism Campus Box 5555 Illinois State University Normal, IL 61790