“A Broken-Hearted Orange”, “Between Raindrops” and “Delaware”

A Broken Hearted Orange

The orange on the counter is no longer an orange,

It can no longer be used for its nutritious value,

For all I see is a sunset peeling atop the skyscrapers in the city.

It can no longer smell like fresh citrus,

For the sound of sweet jazz music fills the room.

The orange can no longer be just an orange,

Because of you—

The world looks different through the eyes that you filled with tears,

This world has changed,

Everything means something else,

And I can never look the other way.

A broken heart finds new reasons for ordinary things,

In order to keep peace with the reasons you used to leave.

So the orange on the counter can no longer be just an orange,

It has to be the sunset,

Or a sailboat,

Or a lamppost on the street,

Because of you this orange I hold in my hand,

I hold lightly afraid of bruising the light bulb for the lamppost,

I dare not rip the peel to break the sail of my boat,

And it shall not rot because the sunset must be so sweet.

Because of you this orange is not an orange, but all the reasons you left

For me to find in objects across the world,

My life is filled with dark hallways of my brain’s grey matter,

Flowing out onto the streets

Attaching to any connection it meets.

And today, this orange was swallowed whole by the memory of you

Between Raindrops

The rain falls to the ground like bombs,

Bursting in puddles all around me.

The air is warm, but I feel cold.

People pass by, looking off into the distance.

They walk side by side, yet miles apart.

No one says a word, fearing the response.

Unsure of the thoughts in our heads,

We walk away, saying no words at all.

Yet, always wishing, wanting, to say something.

The rain falls to the ground,

Making the only noise between us.


One day,

Years ago,

On a beach in Delaware

I arose to the sun rising

Barely slept the night before

Anxiously waiting to see the dolphins

Gliding through the water

In the mist of the sunrise

My eyes widen

As my little feet moved over the sand

I barely noticed the seashells below

Focused on the skyline

As I moved closer

I almost thought they weren’t going to come out

And my wonder was weltering


By minute

But without realizing

The sun was still low in the sky

And then

I saw it

One fin

And then another

And I could feel my soul

Calmed with the ebb and flow

Of the ocean

And in that moment

I knew my soul was reaching out

To those majestic animals

Wondering how much I would love

To swim away

So effortlessly

Like they did every morning


On this beach

In Delaware

And even though I was so young

And so naïve

I knew it

I could feel how much

I would soon want to leave this body

And swim away


About the Author

Elizabeth Rodriguez

Elizabeth Rodriguez is a college senior enrolled in the Secondary Education/English program at Gannon University. She is expected to graduate in May 2018. As an English major, she has continued to develop her sense of style in writing and has continued to find ways to produce more poetry with a variety of voices.