The Death of a Rose Petal

(A Soliloquy)

Valentine’s Day
Does anyone know what it stands for?
Does anyone know what it means?
Do you know why we cut out paper hearts
and glue them to old shoeboxes?
Probably not.
Do you care?

Valentine’s Day. Ugh.
Pointless holiday
popular only through the saturation
of the media
Coaxing you, convincing you
to spend money
on sugary confections and semi-precious stones
Promoting the death of thousands,
no, millions, of roses.
The death of a rose petal.

Valentine’s Day?
They should call it the holiday of roses,
holiday of death.
Death of the rose petals.
A romance that is dead
cannot be rekindled by candlelight
A box of candy can’t resuscitate a still heart.
And those flowers,
oh, those flowers
that decorate
your table, your desk
each longing to grow wild
in some lush valley
each wanting to taste the morning air
and feel the dew accumulate on its skin
But those petals cannot protect themselves
by their thorns
Thorns soon to be clipped
from the stem
from its body
wrenched away
by an unfeeling hand

Those petals
crimson velvet petals
destined to be stored
pressed to two dimensional form
for safekeeping or memories
and when the next dawn breaks
and the confection is gone
the heart will grow still and
the petals . . . forgotten.