We had an innocence no one dared taint,
a naivety that bloomed like flowers in our fists.
Summer evenings were spent climbing
cherry blossom trees where you pressed petals
gently into my palms like a secret,
like the pinky promises we made,
the legal oaths we swore we would keep.
Yet the whole world was lurking beneath our sun spun mornings,
waiting for the right moment to come out
and split the light in two.
We didn’t know that Monday was a day to dread,
a bad omen. That it’s considered unacceptable to go
to the movies alone. That society thrives on gold coins
and little sheets of paper that can buy you status and power.
No. We existed in the nymphet innocence of childhood,
making small ripples in the lake with our toes,
picking petals from small purple flowers and
chanting ‘he loves me, he loves me not’ —
pretending that we actually had an idea
of what that silly word meant.