When my wife and I first moved to Long Island nearly five years ago to take over a family house we were a bit quick to try and make the turn-of-the-century home into our own. While we didn’t exactly tear through the house, knocking down walls and ripping off wallpaper (we actually waited a few weeks to do that), we targeted the landscaping first.
The perimeter of the house was overgrown with shrubs and tall flowering bushes, and since we wanted a cleaner look to the outside I started ripping them out of the ground, and throwing them in the woods next to my house. They all dried out and died there.
However, a few weeks ago while I was walking my two dogs one morning I noticed what looked like a white dinner plate hanging on what I assumed was another tall weed in the woods. But when I walked back there I found it was a massive hibiscus flower blooming from one of the plants I had tossed back there years ago.
The mound of dirt that had come out with the roots still rested on top of the ground, and several brown, dried-out stalks jutted out from the mound. But one root had over time emerged from the transplanted soil and dug itself into the earth of the woods, eventually allowing one new hibiscus stalk to grow.
There’s a lot of symbolism in that, especially for me since I feel like I’ve been in an artistic black hole ever since I moved here, and, for years, did very little but wither. But recently, I’ve been more active, writing and blogging and taking photographs, and even though I still am only mildly inspired by the region, I’m getting back to work, getting back to my goals.
(However, my saxophone is still way too dusty these days.)
I don’t want to over-explain the symbolism. Rather, a simple description can tell you all you need to know. There’s a poem in this, and I’ve added it to the list.
I did, however, take a few photographs of the great flower, which, of course, I left in the woods. The big red circle in the middle makes the flower look like the flag of Japan in close-ups.