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My Father, the Florist

"you felt hibiscus tall"

Published onOct 26, 2022
My Father, the Florist

Photo by Robert Thiemann on

Few times I sought you out
I won’t apologize
for the dead knock out
rose forgotten and left
like bluebonnet colored
bruises you left behind

I suppose I will say:
irises are at the ends
of rainbows or maybe
esperanzas were there.

They say my face is yours
he gave me most of you
but I have learned my words
are adaptable like
a katy petunia
you felt hibiscus tall

the last time I saw you
there was a field packed full
sunflowers and daisies.
We marched through those fields proud

we were bowlegged nodes
zexmenia like
it became a game to
not make noise           or maybe
surely you remember
the salvia hot lips

the flock of hummingbirds.
I swear I love the past
bitter as if ginger
toxic like star jasmine.

I sought you out today
hands outstretched like runners
tus labios whispering
wisterias through me.
You have always been here 
a lilac in the air.


Julián David Bañuelos is a Chicano poet and translator from Lubbock, Texas. He is a graduate of The Iowa Writers’ Workshop. His work can be read in Wine Cellar Press, Latino Book Review, The Bayou Review, Acentos Review, and Annulet Poetics Journal. He currently lives and teaches in Iowa City.




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