The word “orchid” comes from the Greek word for testicles, orchis, but this beauty is all woman.
I am now in care of a Phalaenopsis orchid. My co-workers gave me the beautiful plant as a birthday gift. Its sepals are bright fuchsia and striated, like the palm of a cold hand or stretch marks on the hip’s skin. They explode on the end of a slender stem like in-love faces. I feel nervous holding its pot. On the long subway ride from school to home, riders moved aside for me and my orchid as I settled into the train, uncharacteristically considerate and careful. Looking at it high atop my book shelf, safe from my cat, I’m nervous I’ll lead it to a swift demise. I need some guidance.