Kissing the Flower Vendor
by David Thornbrugh

The market lanes are narrow,
so it is natural to embrace the flower vendor
early in the morning
when she emerges to sprinkle water
on dusty bricks.
She is still warm from her pallet
beneath soft cotton.
When we kiss, cool water
flows from her mouth
to mine.
Her hair smells of rose petals.
Now I will have to buy flowers
for my wife
from a different shop.

by David Thornbrugh

but at some point
you just have to rake the leaves
wash the lettuce
swat the mosquito
put out the garbage
pay your taxes
without making a fuss
over the resemblance
of gravestones
to teeth


David Thornbrugh is an American poet currently living in Krakow,
Poland.  “Snow falling steadily outside, local station repeating
soundtrack for
Star Trek IV, as every day.”  His recent publications
include work in
Slant, Hidden Oak, Freefall, and Prism Quarterly.

“Kissing the Flower Vendor is the result of a dream that I awoke
from one morning with the feel and taste of cool water still in my
mouth from the woman’s lips. Knocked it out on the laptop pretty
much as it appears here. I walk daily through a large Medieval
square past flower vendors selling from behind counters of green
wood under large yellow umbrellas. The last line was a guilty self-
reference to the fact that I seldom buy flowers for my wife — an
example, I hope, of how one transforms emotional energy into art.

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Apple Valley Review:
A Journal of Contemporary

ISSN 1931-3888

Volume 1, Number 1
(Spring 2006)

Copyright © 2006
by Leah Browning, Editor.  

All future rights to material
published in the
Valley Review
are retained
by the individual authors
and artists.
Everything is Symbolic
of Something Else