7

THE ROSE TREE

Shelly and Minica brought me a gift

oh, not a beautifully wrapped present

as they are wont to gratify me with

tokens of their sisterly love

 

No, this time, they gave me

something that can only be defined

as otherworldly, magical, straight out of a fairy tale

yet at the same time, that thing, call it miraculous,

was palpable and spread a subtle perfume

around their inclined heads

 

When visiting my parents’ last abode

outside Brussels, in a tranquil Flemish village

they felt suddenly overwhelmed

no more bleeding, no more tears,

– one or two maybe – but a feeling

of nostalgia and longing,

mixed with a touch of ineffable joy

 

A rose tree had grown, all abloom

as if it were bending to kiss the beloved couple

now reunited in eternity, wishing them a new start

in the afterlife, with boundless merriment and happiness

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