Image for the poem Sacred Contracts V: Retention

Sacred Contracts V: Retention

I've always kept a flower on my desk, a      
daisy or perhaps aster from the roadside.      
It kept me close to nature during work.      
One morning I chose a perfect rose bud.      
She sat for a week but never bloomed.      
After two I knew she never would.    
I didn't throw her out. Maybe I felt guilty      
for plucking her before she opened up.      
After three her head became a crook.    
She seemed in perpetual prayer, an      
eternal vigil over a lover’s cemetery plot    
some forlorn secret buried too soon.    
After a month I entertained dumping her.      
After six weeks I inadvertently bumped her      
with a folder. She landed with a thump.      
Stunned by the sound, I discovered she      
had petrified, was stone-like in resolve.      
She became a permanent paperweight.      
During late nights when I couldn't sleep      
I would meditate over her constantly      
her presence an anatomical mystery.      
In the deepest hour of the coldest Winter      
of my Life I picked her up. Examined her    
hardened exterior like an ancient fossil.      
"What is her essence?" rose up within me.      
I thought, "Beauty". But she had shriveled    
in brilliance, was hardened by rigor mortis.      
Lack of sunlight, too much rain, or, perhaps      
by a late waltz against the cold skin of fog. It      
didn’t matter; I could not answer so let it go.      
"What is her essence?" came the specter    
for weeks. But the answer wouldn't manifest.      
One night, words formed around the space.      
"Invert her and tell me what you see." I was    
amazed to see her become a human heart    
with an understanding that absorbed into me.      
People, too, become hardened by elements:    
Fear. Betrayal. Loss. Loneliness. Pain. But,    
their essence is the same. “What is it?”    
"Love" I answered, without any hesitation      
or doubt. Despite how hardened people      
become, their essence will always be Love.      
Turning her back over, she became, once again,      
a bud. “What is her essence?” echoed... In the    
year I’d had her, one thing had never occurred.      
I pressed her to my nose and deeply inhaled. Her    
aroma was as strong as if Life had opened her up,    
and survived long after she'd given up the ghost.       
Because, you see, some things will never be lost      
to the grave despite how hardened they become.    
Sacred Contracts retain their essence within us.      
Written by Ahavati
All writing remains the property of the author. Don't use it for any purpose without their permission.
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