I had bought N a fancy tonic because he is fancy, and placed in on the kitchen island, unlabeled and unwrapped. Then I went to sleep. He got home sometime after that. When I woke up, I found the flowers in the picture, unidentifiable, tightly budded. There were ten roses that are also just now opening. And a bundle of blue-tipped, thick-stemmed flowers. And three bunches of pussy willow. I kept finding flowers.
When I was seventeen a boy let himself in to my mom's house while my family was away at work and school. He brought a lot of flowers with him. I returned from high school to a million petals scattered on the stained carpet of my bedroom floor. He told me later he had pawned his VCR to buy them all. At the time the sacrifice & crime felt dangerously touching, but now the whole scenario feels a little like a demand.
When I was little, my sister and two friends and I would put all our scarves around our bodies, and drape one across our noses, to look mysterious and (what we hoped was) vaguely Eastern. Then I would gather lapfuls of wildflowers and walk around the neighborhood. The flowers were essential to the look. My favorite scarf was transparent chiffon and had a rose petal print.
Once, in college, instead of flowers, a girl left me a pomegranate. It sat perched on top of the doorknob to my dorm room. I know she was fully aware of the web of symbolism around pomegranates because she was an English major. For my Halloween costume, a week later, I dressed as Death and carried the fruit around with me. Then I let other people break it open and eat the seeds.
Once, I woke up in the early dawn aftermath of a party and found that someone had covered me in a blanket and shredded a rose on top of the blanket. I never found out who had done it, but this remains one of my favorite memories.
The flowers I got this week were closed, unidentifiable. They will not let me in on the bigness of their presence for a few more days. I can't wait to see.