It’s funny to think about some of the things that inspire certain pieces and how long it can take to actually complete one even after the original idea has come to you. This piece was inspired by an older show that I watched when I was younger. One of the characters has a rose motif, and part of her personality combined with some ambient creative energy to give me the initial image that I used to conceptualize this piece, throwing around some abstract ideas critiquing how we tend to think about love, specifically romantic love, and how roses have traditionally been one of its icons. I suppose in some sense, that means that this post vaguely fits into my summer friendship series, but just tangentially.
One last thought: I’m definitely not a poet, and I would’ve always been hesitant to use poetry as a literary medium until recently, but I originally tried to put this piece through the filter of a couple different written mediums and it just turned out better this way, which was just so strange to me. I would’ve much rather done this as a short story or as nonfiction, but it came out in this form, so I decided to run with it. I just think that’s so crazy sometimes, how your writing takes on a little bit of its own sentience and guides you as you’re shaping it.
Maybe roses didn’t always have thorns.
What if they grew them to protect the frailty of our hearts,
To warn us of the neuroticism of fantasy,
That spews lies about romanticism,
Supposedly sealing its essence behind petals and chlorophyll?
Maybe the roses knew better than us,
That four letters encompass much more than mere emotion,
But we’ve deluded ourselves into believing,
In gestures and rules about courtship,
When empirical theories can’t begin to encapsulate this dance of affection.
Maybe the roses were trying to teach us,
How to actually love without conditions that hinder,
So they prick our fingertips and draw blood,
To pierce our hearts and spurn nonchalance,
But we shunned their wisdom and chose to indulge fairytales and false magic instead.
Maybe we should’ve listened to the roses,
When they said we’d have to work and fight pain,
As we toiled in our own gardens in order,
To grow the love we dream about at night.
Now these thorns are the only remnants left reaching out for our attention.