In our photographic travels, we often focus on gardens and flowers: Keukenhof Gardens in Holland, Butchart Gardens in British Columbia, Callaway Gardens in Georgia, Bellingrath Gardens in Alabama, and hundreds more wonderful oases of beauty and timeless moments. These are the places we revisit again and again, reveling in the opportunity, at this late stage in our lives, to truly “stop and smell the roses.” Capturing the photo is important to us, but just being there with all senses present, is far more important. My husband calls the flowers and gardens “eye candy,” and I am reminded of a poem I wrote not long before I turned 70.
When I was new to life and greening still
I was too busy growing up to live,
no time for scent of rose or daffodil.
The future filled my thoughts, accusative
of any moment passed without a plan
for hastening transition of my state
from childhood to adult Utopian,
when I would have real cause to celebrate.
Now I am old, arthritic in my knees,
and wrinkles seam the fabric of my face.
I play with clay, I tease with similes
and wonder at the miracles I trace.
In precious days, as present slips to past,
I laugh to find I am a child at last.