Luscious, Luscious Bouquets

by Phyllis Chesler

The arrangements just kept arriving, one after the other, all in glorious color: A breathtaking arrangement of white orchids, sweet peonies, all manner of pinks and purples, oranges and apricots, red roses too—all marking a birthday in the household, not mine, that of the woman with whom I live. As I write this, it is two days later and I’m looking at the slowly moving waters of Gardiner’s Bay, surrounded by lushly leaved trees, greenery everywhere for suddenly, we are no longer a suburb of Glasgow or London, it is not raw and raining, it is, in fact, far too hot.

We may have to adjust to life in the Extreme: Very cold or very hot, nothing moderate, neither politically nor in terms of our planet’s weather. But I digress. The birds are still singing their old sweet songs; pheasants, perhaps young turkeys, slowly make their way across the roads, totally unafraid of the oncoming cars, and just yesterday, a man appeared on the lawn because he was rescuing a box turtle who’d lost its little way. The restaurant where we were supposed to have a birthday dinner cancelled because they’d had a flood but our hostess quickly found a reservation elsewhere. All’s well/nothing’s well in this tired old world of ours.

But there are still flowers, Mrs. Dalloway’s for her party, ours for a birthday.