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Uncut Stems

Artwork of the Month | April

It’s a banal story.

The first time getting flowers for myself. The flower market hurt, the flowers hurt. The scent, the rustling sound of petals and leaves, the clusters of fresh colours – as if spring would not befall with time but burst out from buds and branches.

I stuffed flowers into my tote bag. There are depressing times when my body’s filled with tears that’d overflow at any moment. This  was one of them. The comic contrast between the devastating me and the thriving flowers. This is why I never liked them, with their easy joyfulness and innocent cruelty.

They took over my room the moment they settled down. I couldn’t take that tender lightness that I couldn’t share. Such refusal of doubts and depths. It only took two bouquets of flowers to conjure up a jungle that suffocates.

Days later, the ripped stems grew back. The flowers stood with lifted heads. The same warming sunlight gave them a painterly texture in a random photo I took of them. I’m grateful. I hope the floral survivors are a sign – the bondage between their givers and the supposed receiver might be mended like the stem. At least a little bit.

It’s a banal story of a lucky one that received enough love to take that joy and beauty. At a less than beautiful time when she feels the urge to share her gratefulness.


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