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a reply of flowers:
space girl’s homecoming

Dynas Johnson

                   i asked if the petals were falling or flying 

that night when they were fluttering towards me i didn’t

ask them what they were doing or where they were going to go

i held out my palms and received them temporal and soft

slowly withering and half translucent against my skin i asked

if they were afraid and they said           why be afraid of going 

home?           gone for the summer already gone to warmer places 

am i brave enough to let go and see where the breeze takes me 

to keep my eyes open even while heading towards impact no i’m

not talking about goodbyes           i’m wondering about blindspots 

how we navigate our environments through a glossy film       smudges

against the surface      bruises underneath         ghosts in the corners

of waking memories                 have i been here before from another 

angle         this photograph looks familiar            i used to take pictures every 

day when i was in high school                   knew it’d be over and all we’d have 

would be one-dimensional memorials      i took a video of the petals 

floating midair didn’t know where this wind came from but it felt 

familiar               was my soul here before         they let go and danced           

were passing over our heads like fragments from a dream others came

to wade in puddle water by my sneakers       where do we end up after 

we let go of our pains       where do we go when we let go of our tears

where do we go when we finally realize who we’ve hurt 

where do we go after we’ve apologized and moved onwards        we say sorry 

for letting go but do we ever acknowledge those we’re moving on from and why 

let’s not be careless                  i always knew that i’d hurt somebody one day 

on purpose by accident it’s still an impact i didn’t mean force didn’t want for

anyone but we grow fruits we didn’t want to share sometimes and sometimes 

they go bad in our refrigerators sometimes we forget that we have food and

sometimes we forget to eat         how we plant our flowers count

how we plant our trees count even more the leaves and blooms shed 

but the branches remain waiting for next year          over and over new things 

the same things from another angle           a new thing becomes a new normal 

and normal is just a state of getting used to          i want to be made of really 

good things           i want to press my roots through good soil            i want to

be pineapple and peach and strawberry      i want to be sweet tea and raspberry 

i want to be perennial and homely i asked the old growth

                                                                                                 if they were falling or flying

                                                               and they just laughed              said to me 

                                          we’ve grown as much as we could              now there’s room

                                          or more

About the Author

A recent graduate from Temple University, Dynas Johnson was the vice president and an editor for SONKU, a university-founded organization for BIPOC creatives. She has poems published in Sooth Swarm Journal, Rogue Agent, Vagabond City Lit, Memoir Mixtapes, and others. Find her at or on Twitter @Dynasthepoet.

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