Friday, July 2, 2010
La Belle Rose
It was just a spindly little stick in the dirt in a small pot when I bought it from a garage sale last winter. I didn’t expect it to be alive, but the pot belonged to a set that would look well on my patio and so I brought it home and left it sitting outside on my workbench, unattended until spring arrived. And then I saw a few very small green leaves slowly unfold from that spindly stick. I cut back the stick, added some water and fertilizer, set the pot in the sunshine, and waited.
I replanted it a month ago when it was only a few inches high. The rose that developed was a gift, an unexpected surprise, a survivor against all odds. It has, more than any of my other patio plants, grown rapidly until it is now about two feet high. And from a spindly stick has sprung beautiful creamy blossoms, some tinged with pink, others not.
In places, the leaves are a little the worse for wear, but then so was my Belle. She was beautiful in her own sweet, frail, arthritic way – such a funny looking little sheltie when she came to me, skinny with just a light dusting of thin fur. And, like the rose, she filled out and her fur became lush and beautiful despite a continuing frailty to her bones and body. As an example of the sheltie breed, she may not have won any prizes for conformation, but her spirit was strong - just like the little stick that became a bushy though imperfect plant.
And so last evening I spread Belle’s ashes around the roots of that creamy, persistent rose. I know not the actual name of this particular rose, but for me it shall be La Belle Rose.
It is a beautiful little rose. And Belle was a beautiful little dog.
I miss her.
(Note: I was just in the process of posting this when I received a call that my 90-something year old mom was found unconcious this morning and has been taken to hospital in serious condition. I was going to add pics of Belle to the post, but I'm off to catch the next ferry. Ironically, my mom's name is Rose.)