I Remember Roses

I remember roses,

Rambler roses,

Vigorous, burgeoning,

Sprawling, nightmare canes

That I fought back with

Sharp shears and thick

Lined leather gloves.

Always after the battle,

I remember the weeping of

Sweet briar sap and the

Welling of red blood from my

Thorn-punctured fingertips.

I remember love,

A strangling tangle of lacerating thorns

Capped by a few fragile blossoms.

I remember I fought to tame that love.

But in the season of storms,

The wind whipped those canes

And their thorns raked my flesh.

Oh, I guarded my heart as best I could,

But I brandished my poor dull lopping shears

In vain.

In the end, I ran for my life.

I still bear the scars.