As I sit here on this sunny, Sunday morning, I see orchids, petunias, mini carnations, impatiens, lobelia, and best of all peonies. My hanging baskets are blooming. I have a few roses peeking out behind me but it will be awhile until they’re in full bloom.
As a city, state, country and world, we are still sitting in a tight pre-bud phase. We can go outside now, we’re told. We can shop at selected places. We can walk, run or jog in certain parks. We can order take out and even dine out. But we have to stay away from each other and/or mask our faces.
That’s what I keep seeing. Everywhere I go, all those masked faces concealing the smile or frown reveal so many tired, sad and terrified eyes.
As I was doing my shopping a few weeks ago, a woman reached for a loaf of bread. She didn’t see me while I waited my 6 feet away for her to make her choice, when she did her eyes got wide as saucers like she was seeing a monster. I remember when people used to smile or nod or say thanks to each other. Now, they stand in line, facing forward, silent, and cringe in fear.
Flowers open and bloom anyway.
I sniff my way all around my flower beds, hovering and admiring and snipping. I carefully leave the buds and spent flowers for the bees and bugs and pick some blooms to bring in the house. In the last few months, I’ve had luscious lilacs, tiny pink crabapple buds, cool calla lilies, purple iris and double ruffled, sweet peonies.
Gathering blooms is such a peaceful, sweet treat every spring. This year, it’s saving my mind and heart and soul. It’s giving purpose to my art, too.
May Days and artful arrangements.
May Day enchanted me as a little girl. It was the one day in my strict Catholic school life when we were encouraged to dress brightly, pick flowers, and gather honoring Mother Mary. I still love May Day, especially for the flowers.
This year in isolation, art and flowers mean even more to me. I’ve always loved decorating my home. So each week, I’ve been combining my love of flowers and decorating with my art.
Inside with my bucket of fresh cut flowers, I line up my wheel-thrown or slab-built porcelain vases filled with water. I rinse the blooms and cut the stems and arrange colors and textures and heights to suit each vase. Then I look around for bowls, plates, cups or birds to complete the arrangements around my home.
My May Days arrangements lightened my heavy heart. So I decided to share them on social media this month hoping they would help bring some beauty and color into the lives of others and lift some fearful faces.
We all need more beauty in and around us. Especially now.