Saturday, July 08, 2006

One Night The Flower

Gardenias bloom behind the fence. (Click picture for larger view) Posted by Picasa
"In the third month of spring
the fruit is full on the enlightenment tree;
One night the flower blooms
and the whole world is fragrant.
~ Dogen Zenji, (1200 - 1253)
My mother loves gardenia bushes and here they grow large, loaded with fragrant blooms; but not in our yard. She has tried before and they always die. Bad soil? Bad planting technique? I don't know. Each time we drive down the street, she points out the healthy, lush bushes in the next door neighbor's front yard and longs for the same in ours.

The house sits up against a drainage ditch for flood prevention. Dense foliage, trees, vines and yard debris is found on the bank behind the fence row. Of course I like to explore the area for photo shots. Just outside the neighbor's back fence stands a row of six or seven small bushes. The leaves are dark, shiny green and I suspected they were also gardenias. Yes indeed and they are currently in full bloom. Mom wanted to ask the neighbor if she could dig one up but I finally talked her out of that move. The flowers are fragrant; the petals soft and full of memories.

My wedding bouquet was made with gardenias; five large white gardenias surrounded by a mixture of pale yellow and apricot colored baby roses and buds, and larger white roses. The center two gardenias and roses pulled out to make a corsage. My attendants carried daisies and fresh honeysuckle intertwined with daisies and roses in the candelabra and along the alter of the chapel. I dried the flowers and kept them for several years until time and many moves finally caught up and they disintegrated.

I still can't look at these gorgeous flowers without thinking back to those days full of promise and excitement. Mom, on the other hand, carried a small Bible with a white orchid on top; I have no idea where her love for gardenias came from. Hmmmmm. Perhaps I'll ask her.

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