Helen’s Flower

You know Helen:
Either she’s sorrowing
over being kidnapped
(twice), or she’s

putting on her makeup.
Flowers made of tears.
Makeup made of flowers.
Either way, Helen wants us

to notice Helen. The great
beauty. Look at me; my face
launched a thousand ships.
My parents mated as birds,

and now a flower grows
with every precious tear!
You know what I say?
So what? Who cares,

Helen? Her flower,
how many people
love it? How many
gardens is it in

right now? Three?
Four? Four hundred?
It doesn’t matter.
My name is Rose.



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24 thoughts on “Helen’s Flower

  1. Now… are we taking about Helen of Troy, that flower make-up beauty — or Helen Brown? But she looked darn fine in blue! 🙂

    And kidnapped TWICE?? what? who? where? when? and why??

    Must. know. More.


    • Thank you! The story of how this flower got its name (essentially, the story of Helen of Troy) was so totally bizarre that I enjoyed writing about it as if it were nothing special. Yeah, yeah, her parents mated as birds … 🙂

  2. In my mind I saw the actress who played Helen in the film “Troy” as I read this. Very cool, I love how you’ve woven all the little Helen dets in the story. Great work, Marilyn!

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