a deep, velvet purple iris blossom on its high stalk,
springs is over.
Tulip stalks are empty;
soft colored petals have curled wide,
My heroes all came from comic books,
the bad guys also.
Innocence held newsprint colors:
red, yellow, blue,
not green of good
and green of evil.
Sweat tastes of salt,
heat of day without
water, or time, to wash it away.
It stings in cuts.
The pain reminds me
of the pastel flesh beneath.
first published in Living With a Stranger: self portrait, 1993.