Occasionally, we turn a corner of life, and there, there it is, genial and gracious as if it were always there waiting for us. Soul-thirsty, bone-weary, all exchanged in a single instant for joy and wonder.
So it was for me this afternoon, trudging along in the hot sun, the lawn mowed, the pots watered, taking a few last moments in the garden for chores that had been neglected far too long. Loppers in one hand, a bottle of stump-kill in the other, I was intently peering into the depths of every hedge, fighting and losing my never-ending battle against errant shrubs; the rough dogwood, redbuds, and mulberry that spring up unbidden everywhere I turn the soil.
There it was today, this year's first regal Asiatic Lily, blood red and calm between the cool shade of a towering 'Sir Thomas Lipton' and a viburnum. This is my first lily to bloom each year, harbinger of a flood of Asiatics, Orientals, and Orientpets to come, but always welcome in its own way, vibrant and fresh in the shadows. Am I amiss to assign voluptuousness to the rich burgundy depths of its bloom, sultry and alluring and eager?
I paused, overcome, in honor of pure beauty in its prime. A phone photo to capture the scene, a moment of awe, and, refreshed, I moved on to less glorious things, a larger garden ever waiting for the touch of its gardener.