Flowers in winter


In these two weeks I have had so little fresh air, so little contact with nature. From the recliner I see trees and a bit of shrubbery, but it’s winter.

The two bouquets of flowers in their vases are like a touchstone, the promise of being able to stroll outside again without help.

I rub my fingers and cheek against the petals. The life force is there.

One bouquet is from Tom’s bosses. Very sweet, considering they don’t know me in the slightest; an extension of esteem for Tom.

It is a mixed bouquet highlighted with orchids. The colors splash into the room and warm my eyes. They are bright and filled with sunlight, drawing rays into the room.

The other is a bouquet of tulips in purple, red, yellow and white, sent by Ann. They are remarkably sturdy, as though they have just this day sprung from the earth, and yet here they are from some far-off place leaning gracefully out of a red glass vase.

The tulips open a little more every day and the colors are like acrylic paints, indestructible and intense.

My brain wears out easily. It takes very little sensory input to shut it down – movies and music and books seem like an assault.

But the flowers are infinitely absorbable. They don’t intrude.

They cradle my healing head with their petals.