“The Valid Clumsiness of Roses” by Tim Suermondt

Tim Suermondt


“Are those for me?”
the woman asks the man
who’s standing stupidly
in the doorway,
holding the red roses.

The man wants to say
“No, they’re for the Super—
of course they’re for you!”
but he merely
hands her the roses
and says: “Who else?”

The woman invites him in—
“These deserve something special,”
and she disappears
into a blue bedroom.

The man sees a painting—
a couple together
on a park bench,
both of them staring
in a different direction.

“Boy, I’ve seen this before,”
the man says to himself
and he knows
that were either
able to remember the other
many years from now—

the memory would be free
of fanfare, quiet
as confetti falling
on the moon.

“Do you like it?”
she woman asks,
showing a green vase
loaded with roses.

“It’s almost pretty as you,”
the man says,
and he thinks he meant
to say just that.

from Rattle #23, Summer 2005


Tim Suermondt: “What else is an Executive Recruiter of Stockbrokers to do but write poems? Seriously, I’m not sure exactly why I write poems. I think Stanley Kunitz had it right when he wrote that poets don’t know why they write poems any more than a cat knows why it scratches a tree. I do know that I’ve done a lot of scratching, with pleasure, on the poetry tree and if the Muse sticks with me, I’ll do even more.” (webpage)

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