How could anyone ever come to love her? Those purple and red and brown and green marks that plagued her skin, always just out of eye sight, reminded her constantly of her inability to be loved. How could someone love her when she had such imperfections on display for all those who wished to see them?
Sometimes Martha would retreat to the garden after the nightly visit from her father, not able to face those stained sheets and floor boards and ripped clothing. She would sit fondly in her already dirty night gown among the weak roses that struggled to survive beneath all their other plants. How her mother could let such beautiful flowers remain so burdened was beyond Martha, but it was this common fault that made her relate to those roses.
In the moon light, she would compare the crimson stained welts on her arms and legs with the shade of the roses. Martha would smile just barely at all their similarities. The only real comfort was her dream that one day she would plant an entire garden