Glorious Complicated

For Theresa

Someone I love is suffering
and I was taking pictures of flowers to send
because neither of us likes cut flowers.

I mean, we love flowers—
it’s just that we don’t like to cut short
their beautiful lives
for the momentary pleasure of humans.

And then there’s also the whole
multinational floral industry,
which is something else altogether
and you probably don’t
want to get me started on that.

So I was taking pictures
of the most vibrant
orange-red multi-layered
flower I could find—

because that’s what my friend is like,
all glorious color and complicated layers—

when a dragonfly pulled up
and landed nearby.
It had round cloudy blue eyes
like tiny marbles
and wings of pewter filigree
and a long segmented silver body.

I snapped a picture and it was gone
and now my day is done
because how can you follow
a bright vermilion zinnia
and a silver and blue dragonfly
and the early autumn wind in the pines
with productivity?

Surely it would be a sin.

Better to sit on the porch
and listen to the wind chimes
and watch the butterflies
and send all our love
to my beautiful, hurting friend.