Deadheading roses

A fine misty rain drizzled quietly throughout the early morning while I deadheaded the roses at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Visitors kept away while all the horticulturalists went to a lecture so I was alone in the garden for a good part of the morning. The rain wrapped the whole place in a languid softness, leaving shimmering droplets of water on the leaves and petals. In quiet solitude, I went through the rows of rose bushes, cutting off dead blooms that only a week ago had been objects of much admiration. They had inspired countless photographs by visitors to the garden. Their fragrance had beguiled passers by.  Now they lay lifeless in my bucket, their petals faded and torn, their beauty all spent. Such is the fate of all living things. I thought about my father, who is nowhere and everywhere in my head, heart and soul. All that's left of him are the precious memory traces that he forged in those he loved.

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