Male 25+. 274 words with Haiku poem. Chris: "Black Lily" From Into the River.

By Paul Pasulka

It wasn’t Susanne, or Sugata. It was Marie. But I did love her. No, she wasn’t my girlfriend. She was just - a woman... A child. I don’t know. Eighteen. A patient in the hospital. In psychiatry. My patient. I was on my internship. She had been... abused? By her cousin. It started when she was fifteen. He was eighteen. It was wrong, I guess. But they loved each other, or thought they did. She thought it was wrong, but couldn’t help herself. So, she talked to her minister. Her cousin was arrested. He confessed. Apologized to her father? No mercy. He cousin was murdered in prison.

She called me, after she got out of the hospital. Said she was feeling down. Could we meet, just to talk. We had coffee a few times. I had started studying at the temple, I mean. And I really respected - loved? - my teacher. He seemed so warm, inviting. I suggested she go there too. He was married, but they… I knew it was wrong…. I never said anything. Did anything. I thought, well since he was a Buddhist, right?

One night she showed up at my apartment. It was raining. She was crying. We talked… We kissed. She kissed me. No, I stopped. I told her I didn’t see how it would help. I held her. We fell asleep.  She was gone when I woke up. She left a poem.

Black lily opens

And bathes in the sun until

Moonlight embraces her.

She was in so much pain. I can’t stop thinking about her. I could’ve stopped it. Him. I could’ve helped her. Stopped her. I did nothing.