Looking down from my second story porch
I see the flowering quince they say will thrive
in almost any soil. This one is no doubt
dead, though its faithful branches reach up
and outward, insulting the brittle dry
sticks that pin the massive bush to fertile
ground. Watery red flowers the color
of diluted blood once bloomed in winter
on its bare and twisted branches, and in
springtime, the dark leaves bore small sharp teeth
so that I thought nothing in the natural world
could kill it. But who am I to make such
bold assumptions?  Who knows for certain which
ones need to be nurtured, how fragile love?