Doomed and Blooming

Note: The poetry book winner will have to wait just a bit, probably till Friday. I’m loving reading all the responses but got distracted by work. How silly of me.

On this morning’s walk, I noticed that it’s time to tear up the streets again. In Phoenix, we do this in fall and winter rather than summer, because it’s kinder on the workers to not make them bake their brains out in summer.

I love seeing all the markings on the street, giving instructions how to route the pipes. I’ve done a post that talks about alien alphabets–and I mean outer space aliens. In Phoenix, you need to explain that phrase.

PlantMy eyes followed the red parallel lines that define some yet-undone path, and right in the middle was a small, brave weed, directly in the path of destruction. And what does the weed do? It doesn’t make up stories about how soon it will be ripped apart. Nope, it does what a plant is supposed to do–it blooms its heart out on its way to setting seeds for the future.

It doesn’t stop and say, “What’s the use?” or “I might as well just quit now.” Nope, it completes its purpose in life, not caring if it gets pulled up in 10 minutes or not. There is a chance that the work won’t start until the seeds have scattered and started new gold-blooming weeds.

And that is why I like to walk in the morning. Plants teach me about life. I now have another inner hero–Plant Wisdom. She needs to speak up when I stop looking at my life purpose and start to define myself by other people’s definition of worth.

Quinn McDonald is a naturalist and a gatherer of metaphors. Her book, The Inner Hero Art Journal will be out in December.

12 thoughts on “Doomed and Blooming

  1. I’m not sure why I think this is related … but years ago I was driving through Texas (of all places) (I suppose it must have been in the Hill Country because it was rolling hilly) and noticed that all the trees were the same height. That is, the trees on top of the hill’s tops and the trees on the bottom of the hill’s tops were at the same level. And I thought it was a metaphor for how we can try and try to do something but if we are planted in the wrong place we won’t thrive as if we were planted in the right place — or trying to do the thing we were meant to be doing. (This was during my immediately-post-college angst of “what am I supposed to be doing.”)

  2. I’m a gatherer of metaphors too Quinn. In extending yours I can’t help but think about how some blooms are showy and admired by all and others go almost unnoticed however they all serve the same purpose for the plant. The plant has no desires above meeting its purpose.

    As I drive to work I think a lot about trees. There’ll blog post about this tonight when I get home from work . . . right now I’m intent on my early morning coffee.

  3. Maybe the plant doesn’t care about being pulled up because “the plant” is not a thing; it’s a stage in something else that we don’t have the right word for (maybe there’s one in an alien alphabet). So the plant doesn’t care about being pulled up any more than water cares whether it’s at a moment mist or ocean.

  4. I don´t know if it is the plant in me but I´m on one of my “Coke & Mentos” moments now. For Art Every Day Month in November I decided to take a picture with my cell per day. Simple, fun, documentary. And then I decided to create a group on FB to share them. Of course I needed a “list of suggestions” for those in need. And one seasonal list per hemisphere and … and … and …
    I´ll bloom till I get pulled or I wither. 😉

  5. I think you would thoroughly enjoy the website: For example, advice from a tree is to stand tall and proud, be content with your natural beauty, drink plenty of water…..They include all kinds of animals and nature. You continue to inspire me. Thanks!

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