Benediction — By Julie Flora

Julie and Caryn

The scarlet sky encircles the close of day,

curling around every corner,
blanketing the tree row,
a mirror of rubies settle upon the water below,
all eyes on this show off,
surely infused with the prayers of a bruised heart,
and you ask yourself why there’s such loneliness in searching,
as the blood orange streaks, like fingers to bless you,
like a benediction to heal you,
rest atop your head,
begging you to pay attention,
turning you around to get a closer look,
drawing you nearer to the truth.
Bow before me, this glory,
and find the meaning in your questions
and the heartache in your answers
and let your worries fade
into the blackened honeycomb of night,
as this regal exhibitionist, clothed in precious jewels
offers itself to you, as if you are the only two  lovers left on earth.

~ Julie Flora

Julie Flora lives and works in Topeka, KS. She lives with her husband, Vaughn, her cat, Lightin’, her dog Zenny, and her happy well-fed chickens. Julie has five children and seven grandchildren. Her roots are Southern, but she claims the Prairie as her home. She moved to KS in 2010 to marry the love of her life. She writes, reads, swims and watches biographical documentaries in her free time. Julie hopes to soon build a studio in which to further engage her creative spirit.

Guest Editor Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg is the 2009-13 Kansas Poet Laureate and the author or editor of over 20 books. Founder of Transformative Language Arts at Goddard College, where she teaches, she also offers community writing workshops widely, and with Kelley Hunt, Brave Voice writing and singing retreats. She founded the 150 Kansas Poems site where she is thrilled to work with many fine guest editor poets and witness powerful writing from and about the heartland.

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