Seeds . . . . . . .

 

 

peonies

There’s something sentimental about peonies.  Well, first of all they are beautiful to look at, then they are heavenly to smell . . . but for me, always they are haunted with memories.  And the memories are associated with love.

One hint of the scent and I am back in my grandmother’s garden . . . I am in church on a sunny Sunday morning . . . I am out in the old country cemetery where vases were filled with peonies every Decoration Day.  (That was before plastic.)

A friend brought me a large bouquet of peonies last week.  I placed them on the counter, near the telephone, and they were still there when I received the call that one of my best family friends had died.  I had known his death was imminent . . but not that imminent.  But I was happy for him that his untreatable cancer had moved full speed ahead and taken him gently, without pain.

He had not wanted a funeral, but we had assured him the funeral was not for him but for his friends and loved ones, and when he agreed he asked me to officiate, to speak on this occasion.  But he said no preaching, no sad songs.

So I directed not a funeral but a memorial service.  I spoke at length and read some of my poems that he had requested.  Others rose to speak, and it was a happy occasion.  Even though it was one of the hardest things I ever did.

But there were lots of flowers.   The scent has always cushioned emotions, the sight inspired our wonder.  With all the things that man has done on earth, has he ever been able from scratch to create a flower?

Nor, from scratch, to create a body for a soul?

funeral flowers

 

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Betty
    Jul 03, 2015 @ 19:07:31

    Thanks for sharing that story. Flowers do more than people realize. I like that plastic flowers are not even allowed in some cemeteries. They may look nice for a drive by but that is all. Sorry about the loss of your friend.

    Reply

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