Symphony of Flowers

Justin Byrne

The stone balcony has been fading 

For years.

The crack has been sneaking up the wall

Since she moved in.

The color has been missing from her hovel

Since he passed.

Day in and day out brought nothing,

Nothing but a hollow feeling,

That she never felt like she would break from.

Her world was dull.

Then as winter yielded to spring,

The flower shops began blooming on the streets.

One with lilacs, another with tulips, and several with

Lavender and wisteria that popped in the sun.

Slowly, very slowly, color began seeping into her 

View again.

She would walk out on the fading balcony,

In front of the cracking, bare wall,

With tea in hand,

To catch a glimpse at the symphony of flowers.

After two or so weeks of luminated street vendors

Peddling petals to pedestrians passing by,

The grandmotherly figure shuffled on her slippers

And slipped out the faded blue door.

She was going to only buy one flower.

After two or so years of a lifeless dinner table

And lack of conversation between television programs,

She was ready to bring back some life.

She would only buy the one

And put it beside his photo.

She arrived at the vendor directly below her balcony,

Who greeted her with a gentle smile,

And gestured towards the vases on the cart.

The old lady nodded and began to inspect,

Up close,

The arrangements in front of her.

There were yellow chrysanthemums,

Pink roses, 

And tulips that faded from to pink to white.

Just like the cotton candy he always loved to buy her.

She returned home with the single flower in hand

To place by his photo on the bedside table. 

The old lady grabbed his chipped coffee mug,

Filled it water,

And set it beside the photo that she woke up next to.

He was smiling,

She returned the gesture with moist eyes

While the tulip rested beside him.

The room finally seemed to gain luster.

She grabbed her purse and left again.

The stone balcony shines like rainbow,

For the first time in years.

The crack hides behind a waterfall of flowers

Since she smiled with him.

The color has returned to her home

Since she regained purpose.

Day in and day out children stare up,

In awe and amazement,

At the old lady’s balcony.

Her world was bright.

Justin Byrne is an elementary teacher in Middle Tennessee who has a strong passion for writing poetry. Justin earned his bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education with dual minors of Music and English from        Middle Tennessee State University. Justin’s work can also be seen in Plants & Poetry and in multiple books--including Global Warming--by  Poets’ Choice. Justin can be found on his website


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