The Basket by Emma Gazley

Today while the ground was damp
The sky dry
A woman with a red face
Hair in gold strands
Wearing a heavy down coat
Approached me at the store

Asking, Do you have a basket?
She said It is for my flowers
I brought her one and said
If this works for you

Without prelude
Her words unfolded like chairs on a beach

My mother
she said
I consider her a true Christian
She is a different religion than I am now
But she taught me
You must never steal,
Yet it is not stealing
to take a flower
What do we do to make the flowers grow?
We have a seed, but do we grow the root?


My mother said
You must thank the flower and take it
It’s the same with the ocean, you know
Her eyes widened.
You have to thank it before you
She put her hand out, as if to pluck a
Tender pink shell from the sand
Take it

She put her bundle of flowers together
I made this bouquet this morning
This is my gift to you.

To me? I said, a hand to my heart
Why me?


You look like a flower.

About the Author: Emma Gazley

Emma Gazley is an artist, musician, writer, adventurer and teacher. Born to two adventurous parents, Emma was destined to be an explorer of the world, and from her earliest moments displayed signs of creativity and curiosity. She has spent time in Europe, Asia, Canada, and currently resides in the U.S. She began her journey of discovering her identity as an artist in 2012, after encountering critical health problems that caused her to lose her job and the ability to do most everyday activities. Many of her projects have, as a result of this event and others, a twinge of the painful and tragic aspects of life.

Emma is interested in learning about grief and how to cope with it, as well as passionate about finding joy in the day to day.