My grandmother used to
wipe the tears off my cheek,
her smile full of all the kindness,
I now wish I could hold.
She had her own brand of love,
Yesterday we were imperfect,
so today we start again,
and tomorrow we will be better.
My hope is that if we are flawed yet,
the flowers will still grow.
My grandfather would promise me:
the will of God will never lead you
where the grace of God cannot keep you.
The flowers will still grow.
If you’ve ever been in so much pain
that its tentacles wrap around you,
until they’ve stolen your breath,
and looked in the mirror to find
absolutely nothing wrong at all,
I’m quite sure that you will know
somehow the flowers still grow.
My mother explained to me:
The world is running low on love
because people have forgotten
how to respect themselves,
so it is our spiritual obligation
as warriors and as women
to protect and uplift one another.
This is why we’re drowning ourselves
in self-help that all say the exact same thing:
Providing the same hollow advice.
We’re drowning faster than ever before,
But somehow we’re still flying while
the flowers grow without care.
Brianna R Duffin was a senior at Haverford High School when she submitted this poem. She now studies English at Rosemont College with the hope of earning an MFA in Creative Writing and an MA in Publishing. She publishes her work on Medium @briannarduffin.