Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A day thinking of Verlaine

the view from Verlaine's balcony
Steve and I have spent the day sorting through papers, and packing up boxes, as we get ready to close down Verlaine's apartment.

The funeral is tomorrow.

Saying goodbye is never easy. 
crabapple blossoms blowing across the grass

I found myself thinking partly about the way that 'activity' (you know, packing, organizing, sorting) provides one avenue for grieving:  a way of both distracting you from the reality of parting, and of connecting you to it at the same time by allowing memories to surface as you sort through objects that you know and that attach you to the person.

I was thinking about that as I took a pause this morning to enjoy the view from the second floor balcony of the apartment that Verlaine moved into during the last year of her life. 

clouds and blossoms white against the blue sky

The grass was green, and the trees were in flower.  I enjoyed sitting there,the feel of the wind, the sight of the white clouds rolling across the sky, and the fragrance of the trees that are in bloom all along the street.
I took my camera with me downstairs to get a photo of the trees from closer by.   The fragrance was amazing. 

I loved the way the blossoms and the clouds held their white outlines against the blue of the sky. 

some rain clouds moving in

Of course, I did notice that some of those clouds were tinged with dark grey on the bottom.  Maybe we would have a fall of rain later in the day.

I asked one woman walking by if she knew the names of the trees outside. She told me the larger white blossomed tree just out the door was a Crabapple, and that the smaller blossomed trees along the street were Mayday trees.  I am sure Verlaine could have also identified the tree names for me.  I am also sure that she too would have enjoyed walking out under the trees.

She was a woman who enjoyed flowers, and who loved to garden. It takes no work at all to pull up the image of her 'puttering around' (to use her phrase) in the backyard, trimming back the roses, or planting a few rows of lobelia or some of the more showy annuals.   

the rain beating down

Certainly, my own backyard in Victoria has been the beneficiary of her work with a garden fork (and her eye for picking out nice plants at the nursery). 

The rain did indeed come by later in the afternoon... complete with thunder and lightening. 

Nourishment for garden. 

Verlaine would have approved.


1 comment:

  1. Hello,

    Thank you for helping me to imagine the last few days when Verlaine has been gone from her apartment. And thank you for letting me look at the clouds and blossoms as she might have seen them when she was there. I have always loved the grandmothers with whom I share grandchildren. She was one of them.



Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.