Of the whole attempt at seeding this spring just one of the seedlings is still in an upright position.
This year I did not buy the sunflower seeds ‘new’, but used the grains from the own previous harvest. During my absence from the house throughout a long winter they dried out to perfection. Perhaps it was too great a challenge for Evolution, in quality as well as in quantity this new crop may be called thin.
After having put the seeds in the small slots of a borrowed seeding tray, I them with a sheet of bubble plastic, delicately perforated. This kept the heat inside, while letting in both light and raindrops.
After a while, though, heavy spring rains and a nasty wind drove the plastic down against the first rising shoots. So off with that rubbish! After all, isn’t plastic the garment in which the Devil dresses up when visiting Mother Earth, as Norman Mailer claimed!
In order to protect the young plants against pecking birds and shitting cats, I posted a screen over them which, some time ago, remained after the demolition of my previous gas stove. A real handyman always saves everything.
It looked quite elegant in the bargain:
In the end, of the dozens of seeds planted about seven shoots came across. They got their own little pot, cherished as they were by gardener and weather gods. After their subsequent transplantation into larger vessels all but three of them got the worst of it. Finally flower no. 3 also perished.
Thus remains one flower planted in the garden. Thereof can be rightly said that it has a Renaissance attitude.
Those women at the time who – their shoulders backwards, abdomen and pelvis forward, ditto head – made the impression of a carnal serpentine.
In the meantime the once bare courtyard had changed into true floral delight. The roses bloomed this year like never before.
Verbena and geranium, after having enjoyed a wet spring, now enjoyed a summer exploding in tropical heat. Everything – except the second remaining sunflower in its cast iron pot in front of the house. An oddly overgrown, leptosome plant that won’t survive without a solid prop. Even so, I fear that the first thrust of a summer’s storm will bring her down.
Bad omen, symbolizing a bleak year of physical and amorous debacle. For the first time in all my seventeen years in La Roche there were also flowerpots that remained empty.
Last year’s soil is still in there. Dry as powder or hard as stone. From where I sit this is hard to decide. I just don’t feel like getting up from my lounge-chair and the camera eye can bring them to me. But dead earth it is, that much is certain.
Along with this spindly, last survivor these empty pots are emblematic of a life that does not really want to live. The decay of a soul, a dissipation that also shows itself in uncut grass and poorly maintained shutters.
Sierksma, La Roche 18.8/2016