Poinsettias in February
What to do with the Poinsettias
when Lent approaches?
Red leaves still velvet, still sumptuous,
gathered in a group of six,
they flow together like flames in a fireplace.
What to do with them now,
when the sacristan rousts them from the sanctuary,
relegates them to a cart in the hall?
Here, in the land where Poinsettias don't bloom outside,
I can't keep all these refugees in my room.
I can't consign them naked to the cold earth
where their velvet will wither into black rags.
So I decapitate them,
pull their rootbound potshaped soil,
snowy with vermiculite.
I dump those clumps
onto the mulch gone ground
over the tulip bulbs.