Life and Decay

Lots of metaphors and sayings are associated with flowers. People can be blooming. A relationship can be delicate as a flower. In Sweden we talk about city kids as asphalt flowers or dandelion children, indicating that they can grow even if the environment is unfriendly. Orchid kids on the other hand, can become extraordinary but only if taken special care of, according to David Dobbs's piece The Science of Success.

With her photo exhibition Flora Supersum now at Trädgårdsföreningen in Gothenburg, Lena Granefelt makes us aware of other qualities in flowers. She asks us "Can flowers think? Eat, go to war, die? In that case, what do they feel when they prepare to perish?" She notes that books on flowers seldom show what they look like when they are dead or dying, although this is often the state we see them in.
Also, she points out that the flower seeds have both death and life within them. Some seeds need to grow within weeks, whereas others can bring life even after a thousand years.

If persons are like flowers, what kind of life can we bring while we get old and start to wither? We can certainly help the younger generation, leaving them things behind they can thrive on. Does it take a special eye to see the beauty in old? I try to take photos of my garden all year round, although I must admit I take more pictures of flowers that are alive and kicking. Maybe I should take another perspective and look for other characteristics.

“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” Marcel Proust

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