08. Lenten Tree

Easter’s early this year — too early for the trees.

The crepe myrtle outside Mom’s church missed

the message, stuck in some eternal winter.


While Mom kneels at the altar, praying for healing,

I go outside to stare at this Lenten tree

that doesn’t know it’s supposed to be blooming.


It’s Easter.


The bark still sheds last year’s scars.

Using the church bulletin, I scrape away the peeling bark.

Flakes like petals fill my hands.