About Pansies

first, they're supposed to be biannuals

that's what the plastic non-recyclable marker

in each compartment of each tray insists

but no, summer after summer after summer

they stare at you with frowns

or wonder on their multi-racial faces

then fold up, then swell into a small balloon

burst like a star

shooting perennial fireworks over a humus night

now just look at the fools -

December, even the magnolia, thinking

it can keep its leaves through the winter, has

learned better -

among the vanished roses, roots

put to bed,

from petals papery in the blanching cold

raise up their indigo looks

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