Monday, May 21, 2012

 So I have this rosebush. Or four. 
Five years ago, we moved into a house with four beautiful old-growth rose bushes bordering the South side of the front yard.
One fuscia, one sunset-colored, one white, and one pink.
I am no gardener, and I do not have a green thumb. But apparently (unexpectedly) old North Denver is an ideal environment for growing rose bushes.
In my fanciful mind, I attribute it to the tens of millions of buffalo that once blackened the high plains of this front range of the Rocky Mountains (decimated in the mid 1800s by human intervention, starvation, and uncontrolled hunting).
I also imagine that Denver cow-town history must have added to the extreme fertility of our soil. 
There seems no other obvious answer, since I know nothing about growing anything, and yet our roses, iris, grapes, lilacs, strawberries, columbine, allium, apple and pear tree continue to thrive, largely unassisted.
in anaïs and i
 But back to the rose bushes. They bloom. The profuse. They thrive. For a couple of years, I just let them grow wild. But my mother (a far more expert gardener) tended to look askance. She told me that, if I pruned, the roses would continue to bloom all summer. 
So I've made an effort. I prune. I dead-head. My fingers are torn to pieces on a regular basis by the vigorous thorns of our thriving rose bushes. It's painful.
I can hardly bring myself to complain.
 As for Q, she loves to follow me out onto the lawn, collect my carefully-snipped roses, and toss them into the air, scattering them willy-nilly across lawn and footpaths.
 Eventually, I have to come out with a giant trash bag and collect the wilting blooms by the handful. It seems wrong to throw out so many roses. But what can a person do? We give some away. We try. During high season, I collect blooms in a copper bowl to decorate the dining table or the mudroom.
 But I think, really, Q has the right idea. 
Stop and smell the roses. 
Gather them in your hands and toss them high into the air so that the bright pink petals shower down around you.
 Kiss the velvet petals. Eat one or two, if the mood strikes you. Sprinkle them in your bath to make it fragrant. And then let it go...
...and move on to the next beautiful moment in life. 
Because really, there are so many. 
Life is short. 
Stop to smell the roses, and then make hay while the sun shines.


  1. oh! She's great with FeiAn flower jacket. Love her red dress too. IdDon't know wether you got my e-mail, but of course feel free to use any of my photos.
    We've got a fantastic rosebush to just in front of our house, and Elsa eats petals.

  2. What a lovely blog you have! I love the colours of your roses, and your daughter is beautiful! Warm regards from Médoc, mft

  3. This is such a beautiful post, I love the use of imagery in your words. The fleeting nature of the blooms, of life, youth and beauty. Well done.