I was perusing my birthday cards and gifts, and wondering where to display them, when it occurred to me that the cards, so thoughtfully chosen by friends and family, were like special snapshots of my life; the yesterday, today, and tomorrow of it.
Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow is the common name of a flowering plant that used to grow in the garden of my childhood home. To us, it was known as Morning, Noon and Night. I was fascinated by it because it had the prettiest flowers. Some were white and some were dark purple and others were in between. A plant with three different coloured flowers! How was this possible? I didn’t know then that the colours of the flowers represented their ages and stages, but I did know about grafting because I had watched a man graft two hibiscus plants for our garden. So my little head imagined that a very clever person had managed to graft together a Morning Plant, a Noon Plant and a Night Plant to create this wondrous hybrid. The fact that no one seemed to own a Morning Plant or a Noon or a Night one was a puzzle but not too concerning. The world was full of puzzles yet to be solved. Fellow blogger Pleisbilongtumi at http://pleisbilongtumi.wordpress.com/2013/03/14/inside-the-beauty-of-brunfelsia-uniflora/#comments has beautiful photos of this garden treasure as it is in his part of the world.
Other treasures, for me, in our family garden were the frangipani trees. I loved them for their rich satiny and sweetly perfumed flowers. I loved their shade. I loved climbing them. I loved watching the ants climbing them. Here is my Yesterday birthday card from my parents and my sister. In Yesterday, I dawdled completely absorbed in natural beauty and my greatest concern may have been nothing more than the whereabouts of the Morning Plant. Well, yes, that and the annoying boy who had a go-kart and who lived in the hotel around the corner and refused to be my boyfriend. What was he thinking?
Here, from a dear friend who has been beside me almost since the days of Yesterday , is the Today Card. Today is a Balancing Act. I have to negotiate the mundane and often precarious materiality of the adult world. Yet, in the tumbly jumble of that world, the preservation of my soul depends on my rushed efforts to consciously apply and reapply beauty and graciousness lest I lose sight of them.
From my brother comes the Tomorrow card. It is a little bit in Yesterday, too, because our first cat, Tiddles, looked similar to this creature. Tiddles enjoyed sleeping comfortably amongst the gerberas.Now I am not intending to, and my brother doesn’t intend that I should, follow the words on the card and sleep my way through the future. I will leave that to the current cat of the house. The Tomorrow card is an aspirational card. It expresses a wish for contentment, peace, relaxation and an accepting oneness with both the natural and man-made worlds. Tomorrow can be here as soon as the next breath but, in the long term view, it contains the hope that keeps the heart beating.
Peg note: If you are wondering why my cards are pegged on a line, it’s because, in contemplating the cards and their relevance to my life, I was, in a sense, “hanging myself out to dry”. The cards, hung by pegs, also remind me of photos being developed and brought to life. And, on the mundane side, it was scorchingly hot indoors, so it was much nicer being outside taking photos in the shade of the pergola.