Hot House Roses, Wild Blue Flax, and Butterflies
Outside, my very most favorite flower of all time (I sound like my 11-year-old daughter) is the blue flax. It is an incredible, almost violet blue. The color is stark and vibrant. The flowers grow abundantly on slender stems. The blossoms are small, each has five petals, and the tiny center of the flower is a bright, lemon yellow. The flowers have a very light scent which smells like springtime to me. They grow wild, in clusters, and can be found throughout our small town this time of year. I LOVE this! When they show up in our lawn I won't let Darrin mow it until they're finished blooming--which makes him a little nuts, but me very happy.
The flax flowers are delicate enough that they can't really be cut and brought indoors. Once plucked, they only last a couple of minutes before they begin to wilt. I know this because when Tabitha and Adam were small, I once showed them the flowers and told them they were my favorite kind. For the rest of the blooming season, I had cups of water throughout my house with green stems in them. At one time the stems also had flowers, but by the time those made it into the house, there were no more petals left, just stems. Tabitha and Adam never could figure out why they picked a flower, but it disappeared before it was delivered to me. I put the stems in water anyway--it IS the thought that counts.
Today when I was running, I took a different path. I stayed on the dirt roads behind the houses, and I found a dirt road which had been lined by stones. It led to a small rock formation. Covering the rocks, and surrounding the area were waves of deep violet. My flax flowers were blooming everywhere. It took my breath away. The beauty was indescribable, and that light scent of springtime was everywhere. As I walked closer I saw that the butterflies were enjoying the flowers and also the warmth of the rocks. They were lazy in the bright sunlight. I walked slowly to a rock and sat down. A butterfly landed near my hand. I didn't move. It began exploring the rock, and, incredibly, crawled up onto the back of my hand. I watched as the beautiful wings opened and closed twice--then, as if it suddenly realized I was there, the butterfly suddenly flitted away. I let my breath out slowly, now becoming aware that I'd been holding it.
As I looked around, I noticed that not all the flax flowers were blue. A few of the plants sported blossoms of stark white. Some of the white flowers were alone, small sad clusters, different from the rest. Others seemed to be surrounded, embraced by the blue blossoms, adding contrast and beauty in the sea of blue. Because of the nature of the flax flower, those stalks of lonely white flowers will soon join the others, because the plants spread rapidly. Soon the embrace will reach those on the outskirts, engulf them, bring them in. And those white blossoms, the brilliant minority, will belong with the multitude, but stand out with a unique beauty all their own.
The experience was amazing, the view incredible--if I must point out or explain the symbolism, it is already lost.