Flowers by the Fire

Eight teazels, burrs, standing out dark in a spray
of slender wayward-spreading honesty.
Those white light pennies represent our wealth,
cast motionless among dark guardians.
Dear, when we marry, who can see our thoughts?
The years ahead have poles which stand out dark
and all the months between them and among
will make the time a picture.
When we look back
the blended presence of a group of flowers
may still return: teazels, dark, in a jar,
each attended by scores of those light circles.

Leaning out from the side are five red lanterns,
wonderful red among the light and dark,
from low among the stems climbing in line,
red flowers, our children, from the Cape of Good Hope.

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