Stealing Peonies. by Emily Ziler

If you’re well prepared, you’ll bring scissors;
stems last longer if they’re cut rather than torn.
You promise that you saw pink ones
just a few hours ago, but in the muddy night
every bloom seems white.
They look full and lush – the best flowers you’ve ever seen
until your dull apartment light
reveals brown tips, dangling petals,
an ant trudging its way across a leaf.

Emily Ziler is a recent English major graduate of Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, Missouri. She has been published in Scop and Fireflies Light. Emily likes folk music, goats, Billy Collins, and sweet tea.