All winter I've been petting these tree buds on my walk home from the Plaza. They're hard and brown and soft as kitten ears. They finally bloomed this Sunday. The blossoms are white with petals like dog tongues. I think it's some kind of magnolia.
They came out brown on the outermost edge of their petals, and I wondered if the oils in my fingers from rubbing them all winter caused the outsides to die prematurely.
When I was little we had a goldfish pond. It was a bushel lined with black tarp sunk into the ground. Jessica and I sat by the bushel when we dumped the goldfish into the water. We picked them up in our hands, tiny hand cups of water. The fish were slimy and bright. White ones and gold. They'd be on their sides one eye looking at us. Jessica assured me that we loved them and needed to pet them.
The fishes died rather quickly. The ones that didn't die from us holding them got eaten by the raccoons.
I'm thinking that sometimes affection isn't great.