Friday, February 5, 2016

Lily

There was a time when I knew you quite well. You were like a garden; I knew all your flowers and colors, all of them etched in my mind with your touch. Then it happened and the door slammed shut--bolted, chain, silence. None of your beauty remained but pale green paint peeling off an iron door, and the windows were empty.
I wanted what was in that garden. My tears fell but they wouldn't open the door. I stroked the stone walls but it did not open the door. I laughed and spoke-no word in return. I will find other gardens, I said; perhaps it will help me forget.
You have flowers that no one else has; I could go to the most exhotic garden in the world and sit unmoved, saying, "Where is the lily?" Our lily. You put it into my hair once, but you seemed to have forgotten.
You became all walls and closed doors to me, but there were still windows. When spring came I could see the tips of the hedges bud and thought, "would you let me enjoy them?" And in other windows I saw dead branches, but you tried to shutter them from me--from everyone. I see things you would forbid me to see, but I have wandered too often in that garden to not know the signs. You are dying, but you are all walls to me. How am I to love the walls as I did your garden? Are the walls apart of the garden of something of their own? I do not know; before I didn't know the walls were even there.
So I will love the walls. I will watch the moss grow on the stone the way you used to bloom in spring. I will ask you if anything was happening within, and you will answer that if there was it wasn't important. Thaat is how we talk now.
It's been a while. I have stopped caring. The other day you hugged me and whispered, "It'll be all right." It was like a flower blooming on the topmost branch, barely reaching over the wall. I looked at it and thought, "Didn't I used to love that tree? It's been so long, but it's not as pretty as I remember. I have forgotten what you looked like on the inside."
Except the lily. I will never forget that. Although I'm sure that if I could enter you today I would find all our lilies shriveled and dead forever. No, I will not enter the garden again.