Midnight Blossoms, Sydney Walker

pandemic – (of a disease) prevalent 
over a whole country or the world.

this year the cherry blossom trees 
bloom later than they ever have.
what does that mean 
except that we are holding our breath?

the woman in Food City coughs 
when she passes and 
I light a candle somewhere,
that blue center, deep lungs.

we don’t love this world,
not really. none of us. 

flames as fish 
in the Venice canals,
flames as the bodies of spring breakers
on a beach in Florida as they
tear through blue water.

history rises unprecedented
except for those
who have already felt its breath.

the woman in the supermarket coughs
and we hold our hands 
beneath kitchen faucets,
water clear over palms,
skin shining. 

when was the last time you were still?
when was the last time you loved
the blue rain and all the lives we ever lived?
when was the last time you stood silent 
and looked below you at the world hovering
like the great joy of anonymity 
and you gave it a name?

maybe we all exist in this same moment
when the world is plunged into water.
we hang there, submerged, 
and go on looking for the surface,
everyone fumbling for the way home.

About the Author

Eliza Moore · Mercer University

Eliza Moore is an English and journalism student at Mercer University. Her work in poetry and creative nonfiction has been published in EcoTheo Review, Macon Magazine, and the Agnes Scott Poetry Anthology, among others. When she is not reading, writing, or editing she enjoys hiking, photography, and travel. This piece first appeared in Dulcimer. 

About the Artist

Sydney Walker · Mercer University

Sydney Walker is a senior at Mercer University getting a bachelor’s in graphic design and studio art. She loves exploring different mediums and is currently working mostly in gouache, colored pencil, and digital illustration. Her recent work focuses on the natural world and creating community. She will show work in her first group exhibition in the Spring of 2023 at The Mceachern Art Center in Macon, Georgia. This piece first appeared in Dulcimer. This piece was first featured in plain china in 2023.

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