Flora

From Manuelzinho.

Winter, 2019–2020 / No. 44
She’s born under a broccoli leaf
delivered by the hermit next door
the pills I take transform his voice
to an abacus of inaudible words
the white-gold sky
bursts open like a boy in love

I’m too high to know if I’m holding
my daughter or a sea bass
her mouth is dramatic and I swear
she has scales!
Everything glitters—
the garden, the clouds, her skin
Manuel’s strange and sudden wings

He must have flown me home
for when I wake, sunset blooms
in the garden of our wallpaper

Flora sleeps
still as a pinned butterfly
Manuelzinho snores gently
exhausted by fatherhood

I was not built
to hold this much love
Leesa Dean is a graduate of the University of Guelph's M.F.A. program and a creative writing instructor at Selkirk College, in British Columbia. Her first book is Waiting for the Cyclone. She lives in the Kootenays, on an acreage, surrounded by crashed cars and fruit trees. Last updated winter, 2019–2020.