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The Reports of My Death

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The reporters are lurking in the rose bushes, anticipating news of my demise.

That might be a perfect phrase.

I suggest you laugh at the thought.

All those men, peering about between the petals and confusing their pencils with the thorns.

Every morning you walk past them in the garden and pretend you don’t notice the scratch of thorn on paper, the collect calls from the pear trees, or the glint of eyeglasses between the rows.

The vase that sits in your room, full up with flowers, is from the interview that you have refused to give. A reporter’s pencil shavings are all over it. You think, perhaps, the decaying water is listening still.

The newspapers at breakfast lose their colour, they’re still waiting for their main story. The public is stretched with anticipation. Demise is late. The reporters write about what they know. Demise isn’t coming. They write about flowers instead. The sordid details of Hyacinth and Rose. How their vines and tendrils unconcernedly propagate and die and breed in dust.

Their readership dwindles. A repackaged story, however much the same, is not what they pay sixpence for.

They say roses belong to youth and love. They’re wrong. All their stories are wrong. They don’t belong to anyone.