Monday, 20 May 2013

the solace of flowers








and then the colours came, and with them my endless fascination with vases - my vases full of flowers, again and again... i read in Kafka's letters to Felice that he "has no feelings for flowers", never had, flowers leave him cold, unless they come from her, and even then... 
some pages later, i read: "with the effort needed in order to keep myself alive and to not lose my mind, i could have built the pyramids". 

if only he had known the solace of flowers, it nearly burst out of me, if only ---














28 comments:

  1. 'the solace of flowers', ce titlu minunat. da, exista o fascinatie a vazelor care ne cuprinde mai ales primavara. si mie mi se intampla la fel, primavara golesc vazele de ce pusesem prin ele, le umplu de flori, incropesc alte vaze din tot felul de recipiente de prin case, totul este posibil cand vazele se umplu fara greutate, cand natura este atat de permisiva. ;-)

    kafka nu a primit flori de la tine, altfel ar fi regandit situatia ;-)

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  2. how can something so simple be so complicated and yet (i laugh), it is. i love your flowers. i always do and i do with something like marvel, not just at the flowers, but your ability to be comfortable (and more than this) with them.

    when we moved into this small and temporary house i thought to practice this. i have had flowers on my window sill, and mostly quite by accident, since we moved in. first carnations that my daughter used in a science fair project and now trilliums that my daughter brought to me as an offering of peace and a cleansing, i think, of her heart. i eye some tulips out in the neighbour's yard knowing that in a day or so i will sneak out and capture one or two.

    why am i uncomfortable? i'm not exactly sure. i have been wondering about this. but it goes something like this, and who knows, perhaps it did for kafka:) (but i don't really think so.) there was a torso of birch bark in the woods. i visited her often. she was a natural work of art and felt like a living body to me, although already stripped from the mother tree. and then the wind and other elements stripped her to pieces. six pieces. i would visit each of those pieces. and then one day it occurred to me while i had one piece in my hand to run. i ran. i brought one piece home how conflicted i was. i felt, despite knowing in many ways i worshipped her, that i was inflicting some kind of ownership on her that changed things. that is how i feel with flowers too. i feel saddened by my love for them that wants to change them. silly, yes, i am sure.

    however - :) even the sadness fits well in my kitchen window. it is a tradition i will not give up any time soon, i think. and in a way, i think it is a practice to see differently. perhaps even, in many elements, to see like you.

    see - complicated)))

    xo
    erin

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    1. it's complicated :-)
      i don't know how to answer, except that maybe i am a bit influenced by the philosophy of ikebana - which sees a flower arrangement as "a living thing where nature and humanity are brought together" - it is not about owning, or even wanting to change the flowers (though surely cutting them means that, yes, on a certain level) - but about accepting that we are parts of the same universe as the flowers, and what matters is the interaction between us and them, we are changed by them as much as we change them. thus, an arrangement can symbolize the entire nature, the way the living spirit works in everything (and this includes the acceptance of fading, of the limited time span)...
      i don't know whether this is clear enough, i am still thinking :-) facing a flower, i am reminded of my own frailty, much more than of the flower's own frailty - though the ideal moment would be when i am not reminded of anything, i simply am, as the flower is :-)

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    2. there is a certain limitation in me that i recognize now. i have a problem with humanity:) i cherish the flower. i will work to see the point at which we might be brought together. that is, after all, a more true version of living. i can not wipe away humanity and then say, ah, for there would no longer be an eye to behold or a mouth to reflect. (this is an interesting discovery for me. thank you:)

      xo
      erin

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  3. Tu nous offres de belles couleurs aujourd'hui! Et c'est bien agréable car la grisaille est si tenace actuellement.

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    1. et voila que la grisaille est revenue chez nous aussi!!! :-(

      merci beaucoup, Chrys...

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  4. citesc si vad aceste lucruri intr-o noua eruptie de bujori,si flori de camp,si le puun si pe ale tale si pe ale mele,si cred ca lumea este,acum,ASTA:)

    si acel liliac,este un liliac in oglinda-acesta este cel norocos,cautat de mine de mica:) seamana...dar cred ca o sa vezi:)-nu spun mai mult:)

    (acela cu piramidele,l-am scos si eu,acum multi ani,si l-am si retinut,zambeam mereu cu gandul la acele piramide invizibile,nevazute de nimeni:) )

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    1. da, piramidele, nu poti ramane la fel dupa ce il citesti, eu asa zic :-)

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  5. I have this one single rose, I've had it some ten years now, pinned to my wall. It is dry and brittle, and the petals look like parchment paper from some long ago...I plucked it from atop my mother's casket as they lowered her down. "Without the rose, we could not do it." - Joseph Beuys.

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    1. the rose! i must make another rose post soon, you are right, Dan :-)

      i also have dry rose petals here, on my table...

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  6. love the simple arrangements of bursting color (and life).
    the clear-glass jars being the perfect vessels to host such
    immense beauty and tender expression of love. wonder-full!

    "what is the heart? a flower opening." ~ Rumi

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    1. wonderful Rumi! thank you for your tender understanding and empathy, as always, Tanya :-)

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  7. i'm with Kafka about flowers--dreadful things.

    Because, losing one's mind is fertile ground for so much more than just drooping clusters of sunshine, the happy communion of rosy faces, or the redolence of nocturnal perfumes.

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    1. i think the magician is the one who knows best about both topics: flowers and fertile losing one's mind (in front of beauty :-)

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  8. hello my beautiful friend, well tane-mar has said it all so beautifully there is not much room for more so a bit of humour I hope you don't mind. humour is never respectful is it haha.
    anyway though first thankyou for this masterpeice of a photo -this golden asenscion of morning glory.but well I sort of see what Kafka means. I say these flowers are frivolous flaunting the powers of the universe seducing only to lead us down an awry path.they are inconsistent.never to be around for long and disappearing in inclement weather conditions
    and this bouquet in a vase, why amputate them and remove them from their natural order where they are so flexible in the wind and speak so beautifully to our early morning star.

    hahaha.(just kidding you know)
    sending you sunbeam kisses.

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    1. dear Madeleine, i understand very well the problem with "amputating" the flowers, and such objections, i have already tried to explain a bit about my own views in my comment to erin... i think that it is a matter where everyone has to follow their own inner feelings, which can't be successfully (or completely) rationalized.
      but if flowers are inconsistent, never to be around for long, then they are the best symbol for our life too...

      sending you may kisses back.

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  9. Replies
    1. merci, Jeff, je t'embrasse...

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  10. That second Kafka quote is staggering. As is the contrast between the two vases of flowers.

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    1. yes, it was meant to be that way, i mean the contrast to translate something of Kafka's own inner trouble... thank you for noticing, Stickup.

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  11. Joy and quietude, equally represented in your bouquets: what better solace?

    (our lilacs are only now about to "pop" but were in full bloom all over Montreal last week when I was there)

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    1. i have just seen your wonderful lilacs, Lynne, i will return for saying how much i like them :-)

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  12. hi my friend, I just had to respond to your comment haha.I think bouquets of flowers are beautiful I was just having fun with aggressive humour and you did provoke me with Kafkas comment haha.
    but I agree with your comment to Erin that is a beautiful way of viewing it.
    and to further support your idea, we interfere with nature when we go out to plant flowers and look at the beauty we can create.
    although around here at christmas time we are starting to shift our views about cutting down pines because trees are valued around here and they take so long to grow.I say we can decorate the outside ones.

    one thing I wanted to point out though is that everything has its contradictions because that is the nature of life and there is inherent violence in everything but in varying degrees. There is absolutely no escaping it. so I guess all us mere mortals can do is opt for the minimum violence and stay away from aggressive humour haha.but then also aggressive humour can be revealing.

    anyway I love your idea about arranging a flower is like communicating with them that is true it is like writing in their language.
    love and light

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  13. have been out taking a lilac reply but, continuing as a rubbish blogger these days, have yet to post...

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    1. swiss! do you still remember the Bridge? i wondered! :-)

      i am waiting for the lilac reply, then...

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