I sit alone in your room, spinning all the things you touched
and wouldn’t let go of. Sea stars and periwinkle shells
arranged and rearranged on your bureau, lotion smoothed
and pressed on the inside of your tiny wrists like perfume,
the reek of vanilla everywhere. Sometimes, you’d twirl
and twirl and twirl, believing dizzy made you strong.
Two floors below, spiderwort blooms,
casting its deep bruising purple everywhere
and I remember, in our first home, when I named it weed,
spent an entire summer dragging it up by its roots
worried it would overcome the dahlias,
but true wildflowers don’t die, and I’ve grown
to love such intrepidness, watching each
three-petaled bloom close at sunset
while the next lies in wait for sunrise. Unstoppable,
like you, twirling, my arms outstretched
to catch you. Dangers lurk everywhere,
the worst we don’t see coming.
Editor’s Note: In this poem, imagery spins possible loss and worry and wisdom into a coherent whole. Life is both messy and beautiful.