Poetry of Stephanie Bennett Henry, Uncategorized


With so many different ways to bloom, I find myself testing the beauty of each one to see how the dark can wilt it ugly, and sometimes in the withering, I find myself in a new light, blooming fluorescent.

Bloom soft, effortlessly like a green thumb needing nothing more than a glow in the dark where nothing is seen but the possibilities through your own eyes. 

Bloom tender, but dirty with hands clean from seeds planted by someone else like a song you know all the words to and sing it even if it doesn’t help you grow. Sing it anyway, bloom through the music each time until the words scrape your throat a little less or a little more.

Bloom like a scream learning to become a whisper. Bloom like a whisper learning how to be heard. Bloom like a tragedy growing into triumph and with the right light, even the dark cannot rain on the parade of you. Bloom like that.

Bloom as though you lost your crown for the hundredth time and don’t even stop to notice. Kick the dirt over the shine like a seed you bury that roots up to cover you with a clone of your own heart, brighter than any crown ever pretended to be.

Bloom like the funeral you feel inside yourself busts open every day and tears into you like a party that never stops celebrating another chance to be alive and new. Bloom into the colors you made up in your own mind, just between the gray, where the gold meets the rainbow no one believed in, and name each color after yourself. I dare you to bloom like that and not apologize for the way your name sounds in someone else’s mouth or the way the light bounces off their eyes to see a shade that describes you wrong.

Bloom from the seeds that still grew when you didn’t give a shit who trampled through your garden and who tended to it with hands that never knew how to strangle the life from your bud. Bloom as though walking away spills the rain from the sky just to taste what you planted so the sun dials itself to full light.

Bloom through the cracks of anywhere just to prove you can. Bloom to show the concrete how to crack open and lose with grace, as it spreads its cracks wide just to follow you home.

Bloom like that. Eyes forward, feet firm, destination unknown, without caring where you’ll end up because you can grow anywhere.

Bloom in the closet where skeletons hold secrets, behind a locked door, but you hold the key now and swallow it, as you carry the bones out with you, bury them deep where they come back like an announcement that never shook you anyway.

Bloom for you. Bloom for every wish you ever made that did not come true, grow into it like you invented it. Grab the stars, pull them down, show them who’s in charge of your wishes now.

Bloom like you. For all the beauty unseen, it does not have to be. Do not ever bloom to be noticed, love, bloom to grow only from the light of your own eyes. Because if you wait to bloom in someone else’s light, you will wilt in their shadow, and you are too bright for any shadow.

Kick the shadow threatening to cover you and burn into a bloom that never stops tasting fire. 

-Stephanie Bennett-Henry


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