burning coal conduit

Dear Readers,

Today, I harvested celosia the color of burning coals, and was so surprised by its glowing, chemical redness that my hands lost their rhythm. My mind, flung far out of the task, landed on a thought: why are these flowers going? Not where (a restaurant, a florist, a dining room table), but why?

photo 3

I imagined the restaurant manager escaping from the usual routine to arrange the celosia into vases by the windows. I remembered a picture that a CSA member sent me of the flowers from her share, arranged in different carefully chosen vases. I thought of the couple, college-age maybe, who passed by my house the other day, right as I was about to get rid of some extra flowers. They bent over the buckets of ammi, basil, and amaranth, smelling the pollen-laden blooms, delighted to take some home.

photo 1

When I dropped flowers at the florist’s today, she was asking her designer to make a “birthday arrangement.” I wonder whose birthday it was? Someone turning a momentous 90 years old? Or someone turning 1? Then I remembered that last week, my flowers went to someone less than a month old. There in the celosia, it struck me that each person is having such a complicated, emotional life; flowers are like a conduit for whatever those emotions are.

photo 2

And even as I’m writing this, I feel glad that I’m a flower farmer, if it means participating in the feeling, breathing lives of everyone around me.

I wish you all a very red flower.

Laura Beth



2 thoughts on “burning coal conduit

  1. Beautiful blog!

    Thank you for sharing it with me.

    We’ve had a beautiful garden this year – mostly veggies, strawberries, and blueberries. The berries just have not produced like they did last year, but I’ve decided it’s because we had such a cool, rainy start to summer. Our veggies have LOVED the weather, though. Our cucumbers are HUGE!

    Our front porch gets all of the afternoon sun. I tried to grow rosemary there once, thinking that since rosemary loved my hot, Texas temperatures when I lived in San Antonio, surely it would love that porch. Alas, no.

    However, I realized this summer that basil loves hot and sunny temps. Wow. Our basil is the best it’s ever been, and I love the fragrance!

    Blessings to you, Crys

    Crys Keiser Crystal Photo Memories http://www.crystalphotomemories.com http://www.flickr.com/photos/crysphotomem

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