The Girl Named Flower
I hate my name.
They could have chosen Iris, Violet, Lily or Rose.
Something less likely to be Flo.
They were hippies. Wanted me to be fruitful, free,
abundant, pretty. Thank god it wasn’t Weed.
I’ve made important people sneeze.
I met Bill, at a bar on a Friday. Lots of friends.
We traded who we worked for, what part of town
we lived in, favorite drinks. He drank stout;
mine a skinny margarita. It was going down
kind of mediocre for the first hour.
He has a condo. I have two roommates.
I write ad copy for creameries. He’s in a bank.
Then he tipped his third Guinness, a foam mustache.
A habit of wiping his fingers through his black hair
like he was afraid he might be balding.
He saw the rosebud tattoo on my ankle.
H showed me a blue tattoo on his wrist bone.
Forget me not, he said. The flower.
Later he said, Flower me.
I thought I might as well. So I did.
Two weeks later I learned
he said Follow me.
* * *
Tricia Knoll is a Portland, Oregon poet who has maintained gardens all her life, sowing the seeds of sanity. She grew up admiring her mother’s roses and vegetable garden. She is an Oregon State University Master Gardener and volunteers at Portland’s Washington Park Rose Test Garden. Her chapbook Urban Wild is available from Amazon and focuses on interactions between humans and wildlife in urban habitat.