Roses

You handed me a flower. No boy had ever given me any flowers before, let alone a rose. I loved roses. It was a surprise. You said, “Just because.” And with a kiss on the cheek, I took it.

It was beautiful. I kept it in a vase for two weeks until the petals began to fall. It had opened up fully and the design was unmatched by anything I had ever seen.

And so that became “our thing”.  You would bring me a rose on days you were in a particularly romantic mood. All different colors, saying you would pick them based on which one you thought would last the longest.

And then there were more. On special occasions you would bring me four, then a half dozen, and finally a dozen beautiful red roses. I took them with both hands and inhaled the delicious scent. I felt like the luckiest girl in the world. I was so surrounded by these beautiful roses that I became blinded by them, unable to see past them.

It wasn’t long after the dozen roses that you left. So I picked them up out of the vase with both my hands, having every intention to throw the last sign of your fake love away. But instead I screamed. Red poured through my fingers, the blood dripping from where each pointed thorn dug into my skin. I unclenched from around the green stems, now tainted with crimson.

 

The wounds have long healed now, leaving only ugly white lines as proof of what you’ve done. All that time I thought you were brightening my room and my day with gorgeous flowers, when in reality, you were only forming the scars that remind me of you. Each faded mark reminds me of what we could have been, of what we were. That line on the right side? That was from the concert we went to in the spring, both of us singing along to each tune, screaming the words. That straight one down the middle? That was the night I got fired unexpectedly, and you held me while I cried. Oh and that one? That’s from the first time I saw it in your eyes, that you loved me. Yeah, that’s a nasty one. It’s funny how I remember each moment associated with each one. Ironic how although the scars fade, the memories don’t.

 

But none of those scars could have prepared me for this. I look up from my once-mangled hand to see you, standing there, with a single red rose.

red rose on brown wooden surface
Photo by Ylanite Koppens on Pexels.com

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