shatter martin-klimas-flower-vase007I heard it fall apart. The boom. The crash. The broken glass.

You, by the thin kitchen light, caught off guard when the vase fell apart. The glass lay scattered around us. We knelt to collect the shards. I carefully picked up the large broken pieces, they were easier to see. You knelt closer to the ground, quickly sweeping up the smaller glass with your bare hands.”My calloused hands,” you said, “can handle the cuts. Yours can’t.”

The glass punctured my soft hands, tiny splinters invisible beneath my skin. Blood dotted my fingertips. I brushed it away, but persistently, the blood seeped, again and again.

Tenderly you took my hands in yours, “I’m so sorry,” you quietly said.

The sharp pain eventually faded away. The scars, however, remained. A faded reminder of the irreparably broken vase.