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I plant my first Lilly in a little, box garden.
dirt under my bitten fingernails,
charm bracelet clanking
against the handle of a trowel.
The smooth, silver heart
takes me back to when I was fifteen.
When I was brushed aside by a boy
I thought would put a ring on my finger.
Leaving salt stains on my mother’s sweater,
And Ben and Jerry blowing up my waistline.
The dangling dog tag bumps my wrist
and I relive a soldier at the front door,
handing mom a folded flag;
the months afterwards,
that I spent wearing his Metallica t-shirt and sleeping in his bed.
The graduation cap dangles,
bringing tears to my eyes,
as I look back
to ice cream cones and swing sets;
days bills didn’t pile up on the counter.
The little gold dog, peeks through the clay,
reflecting the sun.
Small feet rushing down the stairs
to find a curly white poodle
big, red bow around its neck on Christmas morning.
A pink ribbon glints through the soil.
Reminding me of IV needles and hair loss,
but also of my mother’s determination.
Her dreams of my first house
and planting a little, Lilly garden.