A Mother Writes A List

by Gillian Osborne

Rosemary is writing a list
She writes the names of little things she knows
Hawkweed, For-get-me-not

Later, I realize it is she that moves me and not the list
people who love to look at the world

In the antiquated Language of the Flowers
Rosemary stands for remembrance

Do you know what you want from this, she asked,
central upstate winter even when everything was green
smell of snow traveling over lakes


I don’t know the names of these or what they look like
how we’d walked though pastures pulling Queen Anne’s Lace
delicate bit of handiwork someone pricked their finger on a needle
spilled a drop of blood into the center of
easy to identify

Don’t you know what this feeling resembles
she said

This purple has a name
Purple Vetch


Published on June 4, 2019