Thursday, 29 March 2012

In the Garden


dahlia
keeps on
starring


I had lunch with a friend today at a new eatery just opened in our local shopping area. It's heartening to see this swing towards shops and cafes springing up in the suburbs, making it possible to walk for a coffee in your own community.

When I dropped my friend off at her place, I admired her garden showing off the last of her roses and dahlias before winter's advance. One of the dahlia's flowering heads had come off (the one in the photo above). My friend said that sometimes the heads were too big for the stems.

I sympathised, because for the past few days my head too has felt too big for my neck - sounds weird, but that is what it feels like as I struggle with a strange head-ache (probably sinus-related. At the moment I am fobbing it off with a mild pain-killer).


Our garden is beginning to wind down. Spent leaves curl and flowers turn to seed-heads.


Fine, silver 
thistle-down
shows its age 

It is a sad time for us at the moment with the death of someone special to us. I have struggled to absorb the difference his death makes to our world (and even more so, the difference this makes to the world of his family).

Death and sadness are inevitable in life. Nature, and in particular the garden, is a comfort at times like these. The person who died loved his garden and was a very successful and generous gardener. Being among plants and flowers helps with the grief and is a way to remember him.


When we were in Japan I remember seeing a patch of dead lotus flowers. It was the middle of winter when we were there, so the flowers were well and truly spent. The head of each flower was doubled-over, hanging down towards the water the tall stems were standing in. They looked totally defeated. Like brown, empty paper bags, without life, purpose or colour.

I tried to imagine how they must have looked in Spring, and how they will look again (even though I wouldn't be back there to see them) creamy, pink and full against vibrant green.

It struck me that here I was looking at them on the last day of the year.


Last day of the year,
dead lotus flowers
bow their heads


Autumn is being kind to us at the moment and we are enjoying mild, warm days. I am attempting to appreciate every minute of them while they are here.

6 comments:

Lydia said...

Beautiful post in quiet tribute to your friend.

PitWR said...

A lovely gentle post Kay

kj said...

dear dear kay, i am sorry for your loss. i hope your head lightens quickly.

it is your autumn and my spring. it's all beginning again here. i will have dahlias in my garden in august, in honor of my Father. i think they are among the most beautiful and stunning of flowers, and that they survive even when their stem cannot hold them.....

i wish we could meet for coffee at one of those cafes, kay. i know we would take about life and love

take care ♥
love
kj

Kay McKenzie Cooke said...

Lydia, Ruth and kj - Thank you all for your kind comments.

Katherine Dolan said...

Sorry to hear about your loss of someone close, Kay. A garden is a good place to be at these times.

Claire Beynon said...

_/\_, dear Kay. I am sorry to read of the loss of your friend. Sending love across the miles, C xx

Harbour

Harbour
'how this all harbours light'