Church arrangements


I don’t see my mother, in her arrangement, sitting quietly as it does, behind the pulpit, like a good pastor’s wife, careful not to draw too much attention, to itself. “It’s the centrepiece for the Easter sermon,” I am told, by a tight bunch of women who remind me of paint swatches. Gracious Granite. Amicable Ash. Polite Platinum. “A huge honour,” they remind me of a Greek chorus explaining the action to a small child. “Indeed,” is all I offer, a cheap posy from a 5-year-old with dirty fingernails. I try for a better arrangement. “It’s a perfect pyramid of pleasing colours and foliage. Even the daisies look so dutiful!” An insult in my books. A compliment in theirs, which aspires to make them perfect, polite, pleasing, upstanding ferns that will bring order to any social arrangement. Anything but the wild Poppies that spring up, naturally, around these parts, hanging loosely from their hips, their soft red lips dripping with sex, their wild seed blown to the wind to land and propagate of their own. Free will.  “Have you seen your mother yet?” they chorus. I shake my head. Too vigorously. A slither of hair falls from my loosely pinned ponytail, shielding my gaze from theirs, their judgment from mine. They know I have seen her. Perhaps for the first time. Perfectly arranged as they would have her be. Lilly, the simple grass of the field, not Lillith, the wild woman of seed. As she was once. Known. To all.





Categories: Flash Fiction

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