They rest, like gleaming starfish, mouthing light-
bulbs, fringed in gold-faced sticky fillae,
expectant. Clustered like stars on the forked
trunk, among the ovate, bottom-heavy
leaves, dark green, with crenulated margins:
scalloped like a cloud, or doily. Petals
joined, nested like ivory measuring
spoons: tablespoon, teaspoon, one-half, one-quarter.
One-hundred thousand of you, pollinated,
palming life. The decision has come: wet,
smooth, black bark sheds the “not viable”—the ones
with insufficient light, or hosts to moths’
homes. Luminescent petals slide to the ground:
the ill-begotten, eleven-week blood
pulp of a pitiless mother tree.