Fall 1948 • Vol. X No. 4 FictionOctober 1, 1948 |

Give Her Roses

"Give her roses," said the dream, "and everything will be all right." But nothing was all right, nor ever will be again, and still the remedy recurs, "Give her roses, roses. …" Why did it fail? What happened? Why not the right response? In the dream, I dreamed my childhood, in big savage figures, and nothing recognizable except the phrase, which made me remember. I remember that my grandmother, my mother's mother, said it. We were sitting on my grandmother's porch, and my father had come to see my mother. He had been teaching me to write my name, and I practiced it, S Y L V I A. As big as I could make it. Slowly, grandly I wrote my name, and then held it up to show what I could do. That, on the paper, was me, and my father liked it. "Give roses …." They did not think I had heard. How could I know? I was little, with little ears. They did not know how vast and smooth the little mind was, where words could fall and sink forever through soft fissures. Nor did they u

Already have an account? Login

Join KR for even more to read.

Register for a free account to read five free pieces a month from our current issue and digital archive.
Register for Free and Read This Piece



Or become a subscriber today and get complete, immediate access to our digital archives at every subscription level.

Read More

The Norm

By Elaine Gottlieb

"Give her roses," said the dream, "and everything will be all right." But nothing was all right, nor ever will be again, and still the remedy recurs, "Give her roses, […]

Subscribe

Your free registration with Kenyon review incudes access to exclusive content, early access to program registration, and more.

Donate

With your support, we’ll continue 
to cultivate talent and publish extraordinary literature from diverse voices around the world.