States of Poetry 2016 - Western Australia | ‘Tulips in Black and White’ by Carolyn Abbs

Sadness overwhelms me in this circle of cut
flowers; some face me, plead for help, but if

I were to cradle one tulip-heavy head in my palm
like a premature baby, would its petals (that remind

me of my mother's skin when she was old) fall
to the floor? Others turn away in a dried blush

of shame. Just a few plump bodies flaunt sheen
on velvet cloaks, yet stems stoop weary.

They wait in colour-obliterated twilight.
Forgotten.

 

Carolyn Abbs

'Tulips in Black & White' (an earlier version) was published in Black & White Photography, Issue 72, 2007.