Tuesday, May 24, 2011

After a long silence..

 I give you that once yearly miracle of nature...peonies.

Peonies are without a doubt my favorite flowers. We don't have them in Hawaii, or at least I never saw them there. Every year in winter they die back completely into the ground. And in early spring the deep red spears emerge from the ground when all else around them remains dormant.

We have a row of peony bushes in the front of the house. From the moment they surface, I watch over them with fanatical care. They start slow, and then in a matter of a few days, the buds grow as large as golf balls and the stems begin to bend with the weight of the growing flowers.

Watching the bushes.

Rewarded by the bushes.

The deep reds.

And my favorites, the light pinks.

This year we got a torrential downpour and it beat the crap out of many of the blooms, but I managed to save the light pinks by clipping them and bringing them in. I can admire them more this way anyway. Here they are, with that amazing detail that I can stare at for hours without growing tired.

Mei Ping and my peonies, reminding me for some odd reason, of the cover of one of my all time favorite books, The Gastronomical Me, by M.F.K. Fisher.

I'll be back with more soon. I apologize for the lapse. The coming of summer has meant longer days, which means more time spent outside. By the time I am done outdoors, it is often 2000. Also, when it is warmer I tend to cook less. I guess I turn to the kitchen to warm the house in winter, just as much as I rely on food to warm and sustain my body through the cold and dark months.

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