Green Hills Literary Lantern

Blue Roses



The impossible dream

sits across from me

sipping ouzo

delphinium eyes

darkening indigo

as he flirts with the waitress

between sharing with me

details of his love life.


I fiddle with the vase of roses

hedged between us

decide not to mention

in Islam red ones

symbolize male beauty.

He’s vain enough. 


So I half listen

pricked with jealousy

longing to touch that soft skin


instead fixate

on thorns

poking menacingly

from each stem


pluck petals

that drift to the tablecloth

strewn between us

the way Romans

scattered them across beds.


He doesn’t realize

that like Bacchus

I yearn to garland myself

with roses

in a futile attempt

to cool this flaming brain.  



Judi A. Rypma has published over 150 poems in literary journals, most recently in Wisconsin Review, Pinyon, Atlanta Review, Hurricane Review, Sanskrit, and Pearl.   Her latest book of poems is Looking for the Amber Room.  She has published four previous chapbooks, and teaches at Western Michigan University.