Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The African Violet

Blogging will be sporadic over the next few weeks owing to both daughter and granddaughter being here for a month.

And boy, are we enjoying the weather, it has been a glorious summer in Newfoundland!

In the ginormous cornucopia of dastardly political deeds and universal idiocies to blog about, it is virtually impossible to choose one or two. So I won’t. My head begs for relief, as I'm sure yours does too!

Instead I bring you:

I wrote the following when my father died back in 1996, and I think it deserves a fresh airing:

The African Violet
Now, what can I get the Da, the shirts and ties pile up and if he lives to be ninety he has enough cigars,
God, it’s always so hard to think of something he doesn’t throw in a drawer or on a shelf and cluck to himself
At the foolishness of wasting their money on stuff for him that he doesn’t care about or want or need.
Sure God doesn’t he have everything, a lovely pension, a great car, a house, all the travel he could manage.
Now what were we talking about last night at Scrabble, Myra and I had a passion for African Violets,
Couldn’t I get him an African Violet in a nice pot, I’m sure he’s never been given a flower in his life,
He’ll probably think it some new foolishness, and purse his lips and think, do I need the additional responsibility now
Of watering this, and at this stage of my life too, I have better things to do than take care of things in pots.
And four years later I’m there and I see on the sideboard the grey china pot and the green African Violet.
Ah Da, I say, it is looking lovely, aure you took great care of it!
Ah now, why wouldn’t I, he says, taking a great puff off his cigar.
And three months after that, I’m in the house for the last time and there it is, on the kitchen table, in full bloom.


  1. So sweet, WWW! We have one on the kitchen table too, as it happens.

    Enjoy your peaceful blogless leisure time with loved ones, before the summer ends. - We'll be here waiting , as and when. :-)

  2. What a great gift! And how brave of you to do that, give the man a potted flower.

    Have fun with family, glad you're having great weather for the visit.

  3. To cut a long comment short: Ah! ...

    And a splendid time for you and the yours.

  4. How beautiful the poem is, and what a great father you had.

    Have lots of fun with your daughter and granddaughter

  5. It speaks volumes for him that he took care of that plant. It was the right gift for him after all.

    Have fun with your daughter and granddaughter. Enjoy yourselves very much!

  6. Buying the right present for someone with very individual tastes is well-nigh impossible. Glad the African Violet went down so well despite your initial doubts.

  7. @GM:
    thank you!
    We will, thank you!
    It still surprises me, thinking about it, do we ever really know people I wonder.
    Thank you!
    it was and thank you!
    I was really pleased!

  8. WWW. I love your poem. It's really beautiful.... I would like to see more of your poems in the future. :)

    Have a lovely time with your loved ones.

  9. Thanks Nevin, very encouragining indeed, I have a lot of poems!

  10. Beautiful and touching, simple and full of love. Thank you so much for this "fresh airing."

  11. Hope your are all having a great time and long may the good weather last!

  12. So often it's the littlest of things that stir the most poignant memories.

    Like you, I too am 'taking it easy' on the blogging front. We'll wander back eventually. Probably when something new happens to refocus our attentions - away from the endless repetition of disaster.

  13. @Verna:
    thank you!
    Yes we did, thank you.
    I love to focus on the very small in life, it is where all the meaning is. I agree on the sorry state of the world.


Comments are welcome.

Email me at wisewebwomanatgmaildotcom if you're having trouble.