A single flower . . .

Sometimes the beauty of a single, solitary bloom is enough to take your breath away. This lonely tulip in our new-to-us garden was one such.

I’m reminded of the William Blake poem, Auguries of Innocence, of which I suspect most of us are aware only of the first quatrain: To see the world in a grain of sand, and heaven in a wild flower, hold infinity in the palm of your hand, and eternity in an hour. The poem goes on in such tendentious mode that for current sensibilities it’s almost unreadable.

In fact, I’ve scanned through the poem, searching for a jaundiced reference to royalty, but came up with only a contrast between prince’s robes and beggar’s rags. Perhaps that’s apposite enough, today.

Anyway, I was musing on the beauty in a single flower. Matthew, he to whom the first gospel of the New Testament is attributed, may have transcribed the words of Jesus when he wrote, ‘Consider the lilies of the field, how they toil not, neither do they spin. Yet even Solomon, in all his glory, is not arrayed like one of these.’ Another different take on the pomp and circumstance, costumery and flummery with which we are to be presented throughout the endless course of today.

Too, there’s the great tale of The Emperor’s New Clothes, a literary folk tale by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen. A great example of how far pretentiousness can take you, though the mind would boggle were we to take things too literally on that front throughout the course of the day’s ceremony.

Today, lacking solidarity with those who would genuflect before inherited privilege, I think I’ll stick with admiring the lovely tulip in our garden, which exhibits its own intrinsic beauty, and get on with the regular household chores.

That tulip blossom is quite enough joy for me for today.

One response to “A single flower . . .”

  1. Fiona Bernhoeft Avatar
    Fiona Bernhoeft

    Well said, Larry. A perfect bloom and a very worthy focus for such a day.


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