[Portrait of a black man] by Gabrielle Lawrence

From the moment I found you starving
in the winter, sunflower, you were the most beautiful
thing I’ve ever seen. Watching
you wilt with hate, kills
me sunflower. You are shining
through a dark ebbing center,
my love. My sunflower, such strength
rooted though I see you strain your spine to hang your head in casted
shadows. My sunflower, my will.
While strangers pick away
in the highest light of day, my love, my sunflower, I love you—
The light that feeds you, the lord
that loves you, you point me back to God.
And so I love you, in all seasons.
My sunflower, over there by the window,
waiting for the sun to fall—
and sprinkle like seeds
of love. Sunflower. Wholly hurting
my love, my,
my beautiful sunflower. The light!
The light! It loves you sunflower, you fall
into arms that could not save
you. Sunflower crawl/
to me/ come back/ to me/ God.
How I love to see nothing else
like you, my love, my light, my beautiful

sunflower is dead.
Is dying from love
forgotten, the light of life
is dead. Still, if I could live
my love for you I’d die some more
my beautiful—my lovely sunflower.

Gabrielle Lawrence is a writer and editor. Even when she isn't doing the most, she is still in the spirit of much. She is an MFA candidate at the University of Central Arkansas. Her writing can be found in Gravel Magazine, A Gathering Together Journal, Words Apart Magazine, and others. Follow her @gabrielle__l on Twitter or Instagram.