daffodils and yellow

i uncovered daffodils last week. sweet stunted yellow leaves doing their best under layers and layers of dead leaves. layers so deep that the bottom one was wet, flat and close together, like pages of a book.

oh, sweet plants. growing in the absence of light.

today i feel like the plants: slightly betrayed by my self, yellow instead of green, obvious, shocked, chilled, vulnerable. and today i feel like the gardener: strong, tired, sweaty, triumphant, determined, watchful, guilty, regretful.

i said things today i’ve never said in my life.

she took notes and shook her head in sadness.

it sounded like a love scene in a movie: a slow, gentle touch that seemed to last forever. skin golden from the sun, feet tough from being barefoot, a loose summer dress. hidden away with others just beyond a slightly open door. carried out like a newly wed bride over the threshold to join the normalcy of a home that didn’t belong to either of them.

it could have been a movie.

but it wasn’t.
it wasn’t the joy of touch, the thrill of hiding, the comfort of being cared for.
it was perverted power, quiet betrayal, frozen time, cemented memory.

i’ve talked around it, about it, over it for hours and hours,

and yet my voice has never uttered
the syllables mixed with vibration
to tell the details. until today.

every word was like a rake scraping off a layer. like the metal tines scraping to expose another fleshly leaf. the further into the stories, the harder it was to rake loose. brown, dead leaves making a circle around me.

i got the pitchfork to heave the bottom layer, wet and heavy and said words i’ve never said.

i worked so damn hard to stay in the moment, to send my roots deeper, to feel my golden leaves meet the breeze for the first time, to be the earth and the daffodil and the gardener all at once. i knew i could have been the wind or the sun and watched from above, but i stayed still.

less than a week later, the daffodils bloomed. the yellow moved from the leaves to a papery bloom. i want to feel like them.

so i will tend myself with water and sun and golden yellow hope.


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