A Late March Petal

A Retelling of Oscar Wilde’s The Selfish Giant

Hope slicing snow brings back

a late March petal

and a big, big smile flushed full  

in the darkening puddle of Boy’s eyes. 

Softness loosens itself

among two hearts holding tight,

hands folded light. 

Boy raises his plump face.

He wants that blooming cherry-pink blossom 

just there above the highest leaves. 

Not one for you, but a bucket full.

For these brief moments 

it’s worth it to find a way

through foul food debris, 

to bear gunshots and

watch the bursting fireflies. 

Sometimes heavy marvels upheave 

for weeks without sleep. 

But daily he waits

under his favorite cherry tree

to grasp the last warmth of late autumn

slipping from an already darkening sun.

One day, Boy doesn’t come. 

He doesn’t come the next day

or the day after or the day after that.

But Giant is patient. 

Until one fired bullet pierced his chest

and the bullet rain followed. 

Kneel down 

ripped in choking anguish

bloody dawn 

overflown conscious fear. 

Is it because he forgot to bring the milk to Boy?

Is it because he enjoys too much victory in freeze tag?”  

The creatures face contorts with terror and lies, 

pain he had hoped to understand,

of the family who bore him.  

He knows Boy is different, and 

his fading consciousness brings  

a hold on one last hope. 

Boy feels too the bullet ice-cold 

abysmal pain churning, mingling, 

shaking still before that

little hill of spotless white snow 

too scared to see what’s there

after he escapes from the 

tight attic window. 

At once, a shimmered  

glass of cherry blossom petals

start to rot piece by piece

held by Giant’s hand,

let go for the last destination 

sealing the unspeakable truth

dying grey breaking aureole in the sky 

to engrave the story 

between Giant and Boy.

About haringeyunchained

Haringey Unchained is a collective of students aiming to show case the creative talent of Haringey Sixth Form College in Tottenham, London. We think that through the promotion of our creative thoughts, we can educate our community, bringing to the foreground the critical and creative consciousness of a vibrant school in a deprived part of London. We are endeavouring to provide this blog as a platform for our community, giving the space to those whose work otherwise might not be seen or read. Being that the cuffs are off, we are able to express through our photography, art, short fiction and poetry, what’s really on our minds. We are free.

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