When I was young, I was given a ring.
My mother gave it to me before she said goodbye, with a kiss and a wave.
Honestly, though, purity rings, even then, seemed like a fluke
with me. I was a rose
then, too. Blossom to the eye and thorns underneath, eyes stained an icy blue
and childish hands that were calloused, from playing, and rough.
I kept that trait with me. Being rough.
like a boxer in a ring.
I learned to fight, body covered in bruises in shades of black and blue.
My emotions were as dependable as waves –
tender and tranquil. And sometimes, unexpectedly, they rose.
Sensitivity was always a fluke.
So, naturally, falling in love was a fluke.
I wasn’t so pure at sixteen, because it was rough
to keep my mouth shut and my hands to myself around a girl named Sydney Rose.
They say sharks circle you before they attack, making endless rings
before making decisions and going for what they want, rising to the waves.
I just wanted to take her with me, into those murky depths of blue.
My fingers laced with hers, even years later, when we saw her veins of blue
beginning to become more apparent. Her sickness, a fluke.
It must have been, because it hurt her hand to wave
goodbye from behind hospital curtains. Grabbing at something you’re barely missing is rough
when all you’ve wanted is to garnish the finger with a ring
since you were sixteen years old, loving this Sydney Rose.
But as I’ve learned, despite its beauty, a rose
will one day wilt, and fingers tipped in blue
may never wear their rings.
Love, even in its most pure, must have been a fluke
with me, when someone can no longer kiss you roughly
against your mouth, passion no longer coming in insatiable waves.
I gave a little wave
to a stone marked with a name, date, and roses
piled high, petals tenderly grazing against a marker so rough.
And salt-water rivers threatened to drain, so blue,
from my eyes and past a mouth pursed in confusion against such a fluke.
And to say goodbye, I buried with her the symbol of purity that could match our love – my ring.
Now I wear another ring, one with a gold tinted with rose.
I sit in our house overlooking waves, overlooking an ocean blue.
And solitude seems such a fluke, when a life taken means making life remaining rough.
i'm doing assignments that are given in my best friend's creative writing class. this is assignment two, a sestina. she was given the words listed to use, so i did what i could. i don't like how much of this seems just a narrative, but it was my first sestina, so.