Paid a call on Ms. Hazel next door.
She grew up here when it was segregated,
her people couldn’t vote,
and the Klan had a huge Durham chapter.
Today her driveway had medium-sized U.S. flags
along both sides.
She gave me a hug, a blessing,
and when I admired these,
snipped them from her bush
and insisted I take them.
They’re for you too.
Wait — the flowers are trying to tell us something . . .
But they’re whispering . . .
. . . What was that? Let me lean down close.
“Bloom til you die?” Was that it?
Got it, I think. But I may need some help.