The Orange Room Review

Accessible poetry of substance


What Lingers

by Martha Christina


Spring arrived,
and with it, his 
birthday. I brought 
chocolate-covered
almonds, chocolate-
covered raisins, 
cashews, peanuts. 
Others brought
hothouse tulips
and tete-a-tete
daffodils, their 
forced blooms bright
against winter's 
lingering cold. 

        * * *

He was not 
going to be
rehabilitated. 

       * * *

He wasn't afraid, 
but I was.

       * * *

I held his hand
and listened 
to his breathing,
the long pauses,
lengthening.

How 
hard 
it
was
to
let
go.

       * * * 

Summer followed,
of course, and
in the compost bin:
remnants
of petals and stems.



MARTHA CHRISTINA is a frequent contributor to Brevities and has also published short poems in Four and Twenty, Three Line Poetry, and Lilliput Review. Longer work has appeared in earlier issues of The Orange Room Review and in recent issues of Apple Valley Review, Common Ground Review, and The Unrorean.