look closer

I’m not fond of hydrangeas. They are all right when they are vivid cobalt blue, fresh from the florist, but the old plants in alkaline soils that grow into oversized heaps of wishy-washy pink mops are simply not my favourites.

And then, of course, if you leave the flower clusters on over the winter to protect the new shoots, for months on end you have nothing but a dull mess of tangled brown. At least, that’s what I have always thought.

Today, though, I looked a little closer and found the whole bush was decked in a filigree of pale lace.

dead hydrangea filigree skeleton petals
As a poet, I should have remembered that it’s important to focus on details.

Author: don't confuse the narrator

Exploring the boundary between writer and narrator through first person poetry, prose and opinion

2 thoughts on “look closer”

    1. I’ve written about hydrangeas before, too: https://dontconfusethenarrator.wordpress.com/2014/08/10/heads-hair-hats/ – and I think the blooms particularly lend themselves to the idea of flower heads.

      I see you talk of them turning to “rust” in the autumn, which is interesting as I wondered briefly whether to describe the dead heads as gingery brown, but it sounded far too attractive: I have always thought of them as the colour of dried coffee rings, and about as appealing. Now, of course, I’ve looked afresh and will have to reconsider them: maybe the winter petals are like foxed paper, and the skeleton petals the colour of tea-dyed lace. (Hmm… why is an intentional tea-stain a more appealing colour than an accidental coffee stain?)

      Thanks for reading and commenting – and for all the times you’ve ‘liked’ the posts here.

      Liked by 1 person

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