Flowering Means Nothing

the horticulturist replied as
I pointed to the flowers
atop a crested
saguaro cactus
I had tried to save,
its life now oozing away
from bacterial necrosis within.

But tell that to a bee
who greets each flower
she meets as if
it were the first
or Mexican bats 
who migrate
a thousand miles
to lap the sweet nectar
from agave
and saguaro blossoms
or the young woman
whose first flowing blood
marks the opening
of her new life
or the young country
where democracy
once bloomed.

First published in Tipton Poetry Journal Issue #40 (Winter 2019). See page 11.