Valentine

HE SITS cross legged on the fume stained concrete oblivious to the world around him.

Drivers sit in their seats and observe his habits from the safety of their rides before the light shines green. Each changing light marks the passing of minutes and waves of people gone by. All eyes stare at him but don’t see him. All motion unaffected by his movements as the rat race continues up the ramp to the highway leaving him behind.

He sits cross legged on the fume stained concrete surrounding himself with scuffed plastic buckets containing dozens of pre-packaged roses ready to sell. Most wilted from the heat, their burnt tips gathering dust from the exhaust of semi-trucks.

He sits cross legged on the fume stained concrete with a bouquet in his rough hands. He dusts off each petal one at a time and picks off the brown ones, lovingly placing them in a neat little pile at his side, a silent little prayer made for their funeral. The flowers in his hand revived and coated with only a bit of dust now.

He sits on the fume stained concrete hypnotized by the presence of his fragile flowers, eyes tracing the millions of veins that transport water from the stem to the leaves to the sepal to the stamen. Mind overwhelmed at the realization that these very flowers started from the ground, combining raw elements in their simplest form to create a living breathing pulsing beauty.

He sits on the fume stained concrete amazed and grateful that he gets to hold all these blossoms of marvel. Oblivious to the world around him, at least ten red lights of opportunity pass and he doesn’t mind as he smells the roses.