— Cecily Parks

After the summer
sun buries itself west of us
the nasturtiums creep out
from under the jasmine
in the garden and phosphoresce
or so believed
the old horticulturalists
who wrote Darkness flies
at your approach

after Linnaeus’s eldest daughter
discovered that the nasturtium
sparks and glows in the dark
and though at the expense
of the senses a scientist
centuries later proved
the orange flowers
don’t glow but trick the eye
that believes the light shining
in the wilderness shines
so that tears can plot
a course into other people’s eyes
for a little longer
I still won’t tell my daughters
who holds the fire
that doesn’t burn them
and why not.

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