She came in the bouquet I bought at Trader Joe’s right before Thanksgiving, a green sprig and her siblings of background foliage. I noticed her elegant lines and expressive leaves nesting in layers at the base of a verdant knot, exotic and foreign looking in her own right as I trimmed her stem and arranged her along with the others like her and the flowers into a vase. As this or that flower lost petals or started to droop and got plucked out and discarded, she and her kind were the only things living after about two weeks. I transferred her family into a smaller vase and continued to enjoy their presence on the dining room table.
When some of the leaves began to brown and yellow at the tips, I took the vase into the kitchen. I was about to place them all in the trash when a flash of color caught my eye. One of her smaller knots, tucked behind other leaves, had unfurled into a flower. I had no idea that the knot was indeed a bulb and was delighted by this unexpected burst of life. Her petals were slender saffron-like threads of burnt orange, red and yellow, shooting straight up and out like a photo of a fire cracker in full bang. She made me laugh out loud as I snipped away what was dead and placed her flower in yet another smaller vase, appreciating the encore.
What a little giver, a happy reminder that life is full of surprises and abundant in ways that I cannot anticipate.