My family gives me prizes for my birthday
They know that I have everything
I could ever need, so instead
they give me flowers, in bunches, tied with ribbons.
Others by the bucketful, picked with love and scissors
scouted from the backyard in between the springtime rains.
Daffodils and lilacs, a vase of rainbowed tulips, softening
and floppy as cottontail ears.
are even store-bought. Colourful gerberas,
leggy babies slooped in plastic straws. A blooming
African violet I will surely kill by June.
I have roomfuls of bouquets: mums with green salal,
leaves for every year of joy, buds to mark the tears.
But mostly cheery blossoms -- yellow, lots of orange
sunny colours to brighten the house, souvenirs of all
the noise and mess when they were small, reminders
how they brought me love, even then, in droopy clumps
dandelions, spilling out
from tiny sweated fists.