Writing Prompt: When the rose is dead

31 August 2008 – 3 years ago this day, Chris died. I have a dried rose taken from his funeral pressed in a book on my dresser. It was hard remembering the year the preceded that painful day, but then I thought of the wonderful years we all had with him before cancer took him from us. I thought about the day he tried to teach me the rules of cricket, the way he covered the back court as my badminton partner, his ability to out-climb people more than half his age up Mt. Kilimanjaro, a shared joke across the dinner-table, my first Arsenal game at Highbury when they beat his team Leicester 5-1. He sat with his arms folded in a huff every time they scored, but there was a sly smile on his face at my pleasure. He bought me a programme, which I keep in the top drawer of my dresser at home.

There are so many dried roses pressed and scattered around my house. Each of them is a memory. The one that sits in a box in my room was a momento of my grandfather. There is one in a wooden box, a gift from a friend on a rainy day through a rose garden. One is a memory of the first day of summer, another of the first day at Uni.

I’ve always loved roses, yellow ones are my favourites, but I only ever keep roses when there is something I want to remember. It’s not really the colour that matters, but the memory it represents.

Sometimes I open a book or a drawer and the memory comes back to me in a series of dried petals. Today, before I sat down to write I opened my filofax and found the yellow rose from the Princes Street gardens. I stole that one a couple of months ago wilst taking a stroll. It started to rain, warm, heavy drops. I was late for my train home after work, but I didn’t want to leave.  I sat on a low wall to the rear of the garden and sulked at the thought of heading home. I was happy and didn’t want to move.  As I forced myself up, I looked around and spotted a rose bush towards the exit. Wanting to preserve the memory of that perfect evening, I used my sharp little fingernails to cut through the stem. I twirled the flower in my hand, admiring its perfection and deposited it between the pages of my diary.

Flowers mean different things to different people. Most people have a favourite. What’s yours?

Use this prompt anyway you’d like. Right now, I’m back in the garden, feeling the rain.

Writing Prompt: When the rose is dead

Quote for the day

It’s tougher than Himalayan yak jerky on january. But, as any creative person will tell you, there are days when there’s absolutely nothing sweeter than creating something from nothing.

– Richard Krzemein

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