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A Lily

Grey and Gray

Once, I saw a cemetery behind a preschool.

Foliage swept carelessly across the border

between the passed and the future.

Statues frowned and feigned under the harsh,

adjudicating clouds.

Lilies spoke words of persuasion, fortification,

and of illusion.

I don’t recall the day my education began.

I don’t recall learning. Or feeling as a student would.

I recall the colors.

Blues. Reds. Greens.



I never learned the spelling of gray - grey.

Do you see color the way I do?

With an “a” or an “e”?

Do you remember your first day of school?

Or how to spell grey? Gray.

I do not recall how to spell without feeling.

Gray is not a word which carries much with it.

It doesn’t require much thought.

It doesn’t require much thought. Or


Or the cold breeze that begins and ends in an especially

sullen schoolyard? Or the souls that count the millennia

until their learning is ceased? Or the lily who wilts at the

mere mention of time passing and loosing moments or


A lily relies on sunlight for life. It needs water to carry on.

“there is freedom just beyond the hill,”

it said to the weeping willows and the frozen men.

The willows quietly wailed while the men, stalwart and cold,

waited for truth in the rain. The letters would fall like hail

because you cannot spell truth without feeling the

weight of

the word.

Without warning but overflowing with need, our

words slip from the sky and in the

faint grin of the wind, the

towering shriek of the trees, and the

deep, direful caress of the lily

it all comes crashing back.

No matter how many times I shrink my world


the size of a room

My mind drifts back to the day

I saw a cemetery behind a preschool.

I’ll remember it forever.

Just like the grays, I’ll remember it forever.

In dreams.

In moments.

And in Color.

I may not recall the day my education began

…but I expect I’ll remember the day it ends.


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A Lily
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