The lilies, coneflowers and balloon flowers gracing my yard reminded me of this brief but powerful bit about flowers and the visceral shift they brought me one day.
As I took the photo below something shifted inside me. I felt comfort as a thought came to mind.
'This is why we bring flowers to the grieving.'
The day prior I had posted a story that encouraged people to "Go outside, hear the birds sing." Shortly after this I had gone outside and walked around the corner of my house to find feathers on the ground, black feathers with bright yellow tips.
Two days earlier under the same tree the feathers were red, cardinal red. That day I cried. I sat on the ground and wept. The second time though I was stunned. I was angry and busy. I had too many things to do to take time to cry and if I had time I couldn't. I felt numb inside. I went on autopilot. I began running errands which included buying a granular product that supposedly keeps cats away as well as cat collars with bells on them for neighboring cats who venture into the yard. And I'm not a violent person but I felt an emotional current within that made me think this is how folks feel who rush to war.
During this manic running of errands, I pulled into the parking lot of the office supply store and saw this exquisite row of blossoming trees. As I snapped the photo above I literally felt something shift inside me. I felt an inner sense of comfort and immediately thought, 'This is why we bring flowers to the grieving.'
In that moment, I was no longer distressed. All I felt was gratitude to Mother Nature and my unknown human kin who grew, planted and tended these trees. In that moment they felt especially meant for me and my hurting heart. They lined a path bringing me back to peace.
On this day over two years later, I am not grieving the loss of birds. Actually this morning I found one entangled in netting I had around my garden and I was able to free it and feel it fly from my open palm. (I threw away the netting.) Today I am not grieving in the same way but for me at least to be alive means to feel loss as it ebbs and flows in my life in a myriad of ways. Today and I hope always flowers, the pinks, purples, yellows and oranges of Mother Earth's children of summer keep me in a place of peace, a peace that passes understanding.
-Dawn, The Good News Muse 18 March 2012 and 1 July 2014