Six Stages of the Rose/Woman

by Madam Z

The small, tight bud is the infant girl, full of promise. The bud starts to open; the rosy-cheeked girl-child is in Kindergarten. It swells more, becomes fragrant, and she is pubescent. The most perfect stage is when the petals are flared all the way around, but a few are still folded into the center, where the color is deep and rich; the young woman is 19, at her physical peak. It’s all downhill from there, of course. I’m now at the point where there’s only a ragged tuft in the center, with maybe two or three tattered petals hanging on, bleakly.


Madam Z is the author of Headroom. Sometimes her glass is half-full of thorns.