The gruel of winter
killed indiscriminately,
a memorial peony
for a grandfather
slayed in the Holocaust,
the granddaughter’s grief
a torrent of tears at the roots,
incredulous at loss marking loss.

My Peace rosebush,
its delicate yellow blossoms
rimmed with pink
now memory, empty ground
just feet away from lilacs
with flush, fragrant cones and
the occasional ice-burned branch tips,
neighbors that didn’t make it.

Death is like this-
surprising, interspersed
slicing out beauty,
severing connection,
spreading grief like
a shower of dark petals
over our hearts,
right alongside the fresh
seedlings and blooms,
that can’t help but open
and reach toward the sun
of a new day.

~for Sarah
Christopher W., January 26, 2015