Photography poetry

Consider the Lily

Consider the Lily
6-11-2020, A Rainy Day

You’d think the favored, opened, pastel-pink Fringe© notebook from TJMaxx could do it—inspire me automatically to write. I purposely counted the nineteen, dime-sized spirals and traced the copper-colored surfaces of each circular piece in hopes of connecting to some inspiration. Hmm. To no avail. Maybe selecting the favorite mechanical pencil would motivate me to swirl letters and words on the empty notebook page. Nah. Nope. Inspiration’s not like that. I considered earlier inspiration which possibly could inspire. Hmm.  Eariler times? Okay, here I go with an attempt to corner, to catch, inspiration.

 I was awakened before dawn by nature’s stirring—steady pitter-pattering of raindrops and upbeat birdsong. There’s nothing like nature’s alarm clocks moving human’s get-ups.  It got me out of bed right away. In my white cotton nightgown, while a darkened sky lightened, I, with iPhone in hand, opened the front door, tiptoed to the porch swing, and gently sat down to record the 1:01 blissfulness of nature’s harmonic chorus from rhythmic rain and bellowing birds. What a ruckus! Many repetitive raindrops. Many repetitive birds. I wanted to tell them both, “Okay, okay, I’m up.” As skies lightened grayness remained even though intensity of rains and birdsong seemed to lessen with nighttime’s exit. Before going back inside the house, I replayed the 1:01-minute recording. Indeed, those inspirational moments, moments which left, partnered with darkness, were saved for purposeful replays. Maybe that would be the inspiration I needed. Hmm, nope. I realized again that catching inspiration is often like fishing. There are nudges. There are no catches. Every now and then there are catches.

While light-blue streaks streamed across an increasingly-brightening sky, I noticed all the gorgeous greens which rainfall often spotlights. I particularly noticed sheens from rain’s watery wash on our lawn, leaves on nearby loropetalum bushes, porch corner’s river birch leafy branches, and shiny leaves on a variety of potted plants. In scanning all the greens, I immediately noticed a particular plant, a large peace lily, Daddy’s funeral plant from 1999, nestled in a large terra cotta on the porch near the front steps. Although unaffected by the early-morning downpours, it definitely had its own affect, effect—and inspiration.

It was porch-railing high this year. In past years and as in this year, around Father’s Day, this plant speaks in blooms. Each year it shoots out memorable white, stately blooms which seem to send messages. I like to think the various numerical counts of blooms deliver significant messages. (A bit crazy? Why not follow the Peace Lily there? Oh, smile with me.) One year there were eight blooms which were delightful. I immediately thought of my two brothers, four sisters, me, and Momma. Peace Lily blooms for us.  Another year there were seven blooms. I thought of all seven of us—once more plant-delivered messages. What a gift to get these peace-lily messages right around Father’s Day since 1999. This year in June 2020, “unprecedented” times for everyone, there are three white, stately peace-lily blooms, all perfectly-formed on Daddy’s plant nestled in the large, old terra-cotta pot on my porch. The three blooms simply-displayed mean I love you. I quickly decode this message for all—you, me, family, friends, each race, every gender, in all of earth’s locations. It’s for our world. Every now and then there are inspirational catches. Please catch this one. Consider the search for inspiration. Consider the nudges. Consider the lily. Think of what’s needed now—before and after June under sun and under moon. We need love

“Thank you, Daddy, for this year’s simple message in unprecedented times in 2020 when simplicities can only help all  complexities. Thank you, Daddy, for messages of peace, and reminding me to consider the lily.”




2 replies on “Consider the Lily”

I enjoyed reading your reflections, and seeing the roots of your inspiration. It is so good to be reminded of loved ones past and present by that which we see around us.

Liked by 1 person

Hi Jan

What a gorgeous narrative and photo. Yes, I will and have “considered the lily in the past. You really touch on something meaningful and beautiful in this piece. We all need to find love that unites, inspires and instills trust. Let us hope as a nation we can look within and flower with peace. Thank you so much for this lovely message.

Take care,

Liked by 1 person

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