When a tiny flower falls…

Digital Camera

[I’m opening this post with a quote from D.E. Stevenson‘s Winter and Rough Weather (also published as Shoulder the Sky), sequel to Music in the Hills… because I hear His Voice echoing through time in them...and maybe you will too.]

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“She had a whole day before her,  a whole empty day.  She was sitting and thinking about it — and wondering if she would ever get used to it — when a tiny flower fell on to her plate.

This was no miracle of course, the explanation was simple, Rhoda had picked some sprays of viburnum fragans in the kitchen garden.  She had gone out yesterday and been beguiled by the tiny pink flowers growing upon the black leafless twigs.  She had brought them in and arranged them in a bowl and placed them in the middle of the table — there was no more to it than that.

Rhoda was about to brush the flower from her plate when suddenly the perfection of it struck her… one tiny flower-head but quite perfect.  It was so small and insignificant that she herself who had picked the sprays and arranged them (and incidentally prided herself somewhat upon her percipience) had not noticed the beauty of it.  As all artists, Rhoda looked for beauty – but she had been bold in her painting, she had gone for effect, she had not thought of looking for beauty in so small and insignificant thing, which, to be properly appreciated, required the aid of a magnifying glass.

Of course Rhoda had certain duties to accomplish (she could not sit and look at a tiny flower-head all morning) but, although she moved about and made the bed and talked to the cook about the food, the thought of the small insignificant thing with it’s perfection of beauty remained with her and gave her happiness.

The floweret had dropped on to her plate.   Look, it said.   Here I am — and there are millions like me — and each one of us is perfect — perfectly beautiful.  Here’s your world.  It’s full of beauty.  Be happy in it.

…Taking up the bowl of viburnum fragrans, she carried it upstairs to her (painting) studio.  Her fingers had begun to tingle…” 

~ D.E.

Digital Camera

Percipient:  readily capable of perceiving, someone who perceives, having perception, discriminating, having appreciation

Oh these words I’m coming across in D.E. Stevenson books!  She sprinkles them there so naturally, like jeweled flavor drops that melt in your mouth!

Like variegated seashells of rainbow hues and scalloped edges hiding here, there along the shore…just waiting to be picked up and held close.

I wonder – did Miss Dorothy Emily speak the way she wrote?  Were these words once so light on the tongue in everyday?

Sadly, I’ve often felt much like one of her characters expresses in Winter and Rough Weather when it comes to vocabulary:

“Of course she’s lived here for years and years, ever since she was married, bu she still speaks with a slight accent especially when she gets excited or very interested in what she’s saying.  The odd thing is she really speaks English better than we do.  I mean she seems to find the right word.”   Mamie sighed and added, “I never can.  I mean even if I know the right word to use I can’t use it.”

“Why?” asked Rhoda.

“It seems so stuck up to use long words,” explained Mamie.

And suddenly — I’m feeling rebellious to this thought that has held those reading lovers of us all captive for much too long.  It goes back to worrying what peers think and wanting to fit in, doesn’t it?   Perhaps it is being – stuck up – not to use them!  To throw them away, like blossoms when they fall…

So today… I’m gazing at tiny blue forget-me- nots in a lovely little English Garden arrangement pot on my porch… and thinking of Rhoda finding heart-striking beauty in her tiny pink virburum fragans (love that name too, nearly conjures up the fragrance doesn’t it?)… and ruminating

Blue forget-me-nots

Let us find treasure in our percipience 🙂 and look for spots of stillness on this Saturday /Sunday to just breathe in the fragrance of the Master Artist… really look at the flowerlets of tiny joy He is dropping onto our plates. 

For, ‘ there are millions like them — and each one…is perfect — perfectly beautiful.’  Each one telling us, just as to  D.E.’s Rhoda in 1951, (who I suspect was D.E. herself)…  “Here’s your world.  It’s full of beauty.  Be happy in it.”

As He has made us all artists after His own heart, given artist eye as inheritance,  let us recognize  the Holy Spirit tingle in our hands and                  ask Him to pour His beauty through them!

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     And today… I’m adding a new post category here too…                                            of Forget-me-not Words…  🙂

Because…I’m realizing…not only have I too long abandoned them in speech, but also in writing… till they have been forgotten… and there is something in gentleness and  eloquence about them that I think, should not be misplaced…

Do you have any words of such too often forgotten ‘flower’ (or seashell! 🙂 )  kind as percipience that you especially love?  Share them in my comments!

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Think about things that are pure and lovely,

and dwell on the fine, good things in others.

Think about all you can praise God for and be glad about.

~ Phil 4:8

© Pam Depoyan

                           Sharing with:          Renewed Daily - Recommendation Saturday     Beauty in His Grip Button   Scripture and Snapshot                                                   Sunday Stillness with Janis Cox 

photos: mine, except for the solo blue forget me not, dreamtime stock

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About Pam@Writing...Apples of Gold

I love to hear your thoughts, even chat back and forth amongst comments.Won't you join the conversation? :) ..................................................................................................................... May my stories refresh you, like a whisper from our Father's Heart !
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24 Responses to When a tiny flower falls…

  1. HI PAM!!
    This posting of yours comes on a day filled with emotions, meanings, worry–even a bit of FEAR. The reason for all the swirling going on inside me is simple—“I am going to church today with my Husband–first time since early March!”

    What will people think? Will they even give me a second glance? All these months of being at home–a painfully SLOW recovery that I am still working on, facing my fears of being “out among people” again. Knowing I must instantly stand back–no hugging, few handshakes–just sitting in silence, and then my words came as I read your post.

    On this day–“My Cup Runneth Over”–those words allow me to push aside all the negative feelings and realize–I am blessed to walk into HIS house on the arm of my loving husband! On that long ago night–before I even KNEW how sick I was about to become, I asked the LORD to watch over me, just in case I were to get sick! Of course, HE knew my heart, body, spirit–all of it before the illness struck me down.

    So its not a “humongous” word that I have to offer–instead it is the grouping of words that express the JOY I feel today. It does not matter what others think, say, or don’t say–all that matters is my true relationship with our MASTER…

    Bless you for this loving posting Pam….. martha

    • Martha, what beautiful words you leave me here today!! Thank you so much. It means a lot to know how this post touched and heartened you today! I know exactly what you mean. I can sometimes feel like that when I haven’t been out among people as much as usual, even when it is somewhere I really want to be and people I love to be around! That old devil, putting fears and uneasiness on us! I think people will say, Look there’s our dear friend Martha! It is SO good to see her! And even if they can’t embrace you physically, they can embrace you with smiles and joy and love. And sharing your love for Him! The words in your heart, My cup runneth over, instantly put that old beautiful song in my mind! Do you know it? We used to have an Ed Ames album that had it on it… oh, such a gorgeous song! My Cup runneth over… with LOVE. He is singing it over you… Humungous words of truth and joy! Thank you for letting me know this encouraged you today, and sharing your heart!

    • Thank you, Martha! Thanks for sharing the followup… Your cup runneth over… yes! Blessings to your week ahead! 🙂

  2. lynndmorrissey says:

    This is a breathtaking post, Pam, and look how it has aleady affected a reader, above! I love what you do here–the encrouagement, the beauty, the challenge. I am knee-deep in decluttering a closet (and am NOT even supposed to be here–why I get so far behind), but I just had to encourageYOU and thank you for this. What you do here mattters significantly. My word today: sussuration. A friend told me yesterday that my poetry if full of that! =] More later on this, but back to the closet for now, before my husband gets home! Don’t tell him I’m reading your posts when I am supposed to be rearranging piles! Ha!
    Love
    Lynn

    • Oh, thank you, Lynni as always. For taking a moment away from your duties (like Rhoda!) to sneak a peek here and comment. I was just asking God why I am even writing these because silence makes me wonder what readers think. And you and Martha remind me why. You express exactly how I felt when I came across this passage this week in a few moments stolen for book reading! I actually read this book last year under the name Shoulder the Sky, so when I ordered Winter and Rough Weather from the library, I didn’t realize it was the same. Seems America retitled some of her books. But I loved this one and decided to re-read since I had it out. And that passage just made me stop and savor. It blesses me to find kindred hearts like you and Martha who found this so uplifting too! Your encouraging words are like his flowerlets on my plate today! 🙂

      Mm… susseration. Just the pronouncing of it gives the meaning, doesn’t it? That whispering sound… 🙂 (Reminds me of an old movie that was a take on Cinderella… the fairy godmother was a bit eccentric, and she loved words. She would say, I love “win…dow…sillllll,” don’t you???)

      And…ah… your husband won’t hear of your whereabouts from me. 🙂 (I should be cleaning out closets and straightening my home but writing and drawing are taking my days… )

      • Pam~~
        I had to “touch base” again as a follow-up to my words—after we came home from Church services last night, I noticed my husband seemed more relaxed after church than I had seen him be in a very long time. So I asked him “what made church different for you tonight?” He paused for a second and told me “You were there with me” and I could feel that ‘inner cup” running over!!

        The Lord knows all my fears,doubts, worries–and all I need do is LET GO…. and LET GOD handle it…. All my fears washed away yesterday as we sat beside each other, and I really didn’t care if a single person realized I was there.. Your words are very inspiring Pam–sometimes it might take me a while to read them–but do not worry about having tons of replies or just one–because the MASTER has already sealed your words with HIS touch of love….

        bless you for being a true servant of The Lord… martha

  3. lynndmorrissey says:

    I had meant to say, too, that your street is so pretty, Pam. It reminds me of where we used to live. We had an Arts and Crafts bungalow that we dubbed Linden Cottage. We lived on Linden Avenue.

  4. lynndmorrissey says:

    I met Shirley Jones once when I presented her w/ roses on behalf of the USO. Her photo sits on my credenza. =] She remains very beautiful.

  5. Barbie says:

    Your writing is beautiful. Thank you for sharing at The Weekend Brew!

  6. lynndmorrissey says:

    Pam, I was hoping to share a Madeleine L’Engle quote with you about the need not to reduce our vocabulary, but I’ve had unexpected things crop up today, and may not have time to dig up the book (Walking on Water). At any rate, let me just say that I am so glad that *you* said this! There are real efforts in the publishing world to dumb down vocabulary to a minimal level. This happened w/ my book, and even though I was able to keep much of my own vocabulary (but w/ great effort to convince), some of it was dumbed down, for no other reason than it was thought women would have to look up words. A friend of mine and I always love it when we have to read with dictionaries at the ready, because it’s then that we learn. I was just reading a classic over the holiday and had to look up quite a few words (the book was written in the 1800s). Granted, I’m not suggesting we use archaic language that really is never used any more unless there would be an important reason to do so, but to reduce our writing to a fourth-grade vocabulary, I think personally insults our readers. The point is not to use twenty-dollar words to show off, but to express exactly what we mean to say. Language is very finely and specifically nuanced. Was it a big ocean or a fathomless one–a pretty sunet or a breathtaking one–a blue sky or a cerulean? The more specific we can be, the more inviting, intense, and believable our writing becomes. It is (to paraphrase Mark Twain) the difference between lightening and lightening bug (something like that)! Thank you for capturing us with the beauty of your expressive, intelligent, and descriptive writing. Thank you for not insulting us. And may I also genuinely encourage you to continue? I’m sorry that you feel discouraged at times. We are reading and benefitting from your beauty here at Apples of Gold. And likely more are reading, but not commenting. I’m not savvy as to how to increase your readership, but I know there are those who are, of whom you could avail yourself. In the end, though, I know you trust that God will bring whom He will to bask in your words when they need to be blessed!
    Love
    Lynn
    P.S. I love this quote by my former pastor regarding the published poetry of a friend of mine: “When I read your poems, I give thanks for three things (in increasing order), every time: That you rescue good words from unjust desuetude; that you state common thoughts in uncommon ways, so that they are common no more; that you express uncommon thoughts that connect with deep, but too-little-examined experiences.” I have enriched my vocabulary and understanding of the multi-faceted nuances of words and life experiences by reading my friend’s poetry over the years, and in so doing, I have enriched my life. I think that what my pastor said about his poetry should really be some of our goals as writers.

    • It’s so true… all that you shared, Lynn! I caught part of a national spelling bee on TV the other night and the words were so off the wall… nothing anyone would ever use… just to make it complicated and try to trip up. What is the use in that? But there is such richness and beauty in vocabulary that is falling by the wayside. I see it in books like D.E. and even if I don’t take time to look them up as I’m reading (which I usually don’t), they make me pause, think about the nuances. I wrote for eighth grade level for so long with my work that I tend to write that way a lot still… and I’m wanting to infuse some word jewels like these now. I see that hunger in my friends’ kids who are readers too… loving to read and discover new words. And truly they can just roll around on your tongue at times, like something sweet, can’t they? I think there is a way to write with them and not be pretentious… or put off people. Lyrical writing is filled with beauty, not just average words, though they are building blocks too… Thank you for your encouraging words.

  7. carolapv says:

    Enjoyed your post and I am inspired to look for a book by D.E. Stevenson. Currently I am reading Mrs. Lincoln’s Rival by Jennifer Chiaverini (with a dictionary available). Barouche is a type of carriage. The word, rusticate, can refer to a way of life or the edge of stone bricks.
    I’m visiting today from Sunday Stillness.

    • I have loved every D.E. I could order from the library system! Here they are able to get them from libraries all over and send them to my local branch. There are only four of her books recently reissued and available so far (I discovered her at Barnes and Noble, with her Mrs. Buncle book), but I am hoping they republish many more…My favorite of those republished is “The Young Clementina.” But I do see a lot of used copies of all her books available online too.

      Love the word barouche! And rusticate… thanks for sharing those Carol!

  8. What a beautiful way to start my Monday by reading your lovely and loving words! I must go in search of Miss Dorothy Emily now — I’ve never read anything of hers and at the moment I feel enchanted by what you’ve shared of her.

    Perspicacious — how’s that for a word? Doesn’t it just roll right off the tongue? I don’t remember where I read it, heard it, but the sound of it has stayed with me. In case you’re curious, it means “having keen mental perception and understanding; discerning.”

    Dropping in from Sharing His Beauty. Have a blessed week!

    • Hi Sherrey! Yes, I love that word too! And it does just roll right off the tongue! In fact, I think I have just found it doing so in one of D.E’s books. I wonder if it isn’t a derivative of percipient with similar meanings… 🙂 Thanks for sharing it!

      Oh, I hope you and Carol above do go out and find some of her books! I have even reread a few… sad to come to the end of about 50 over the last year that the library has found for me. (I’ve written a couple of reviews of her books here under category of book reviews…) Some of them were even out of print between the 40’s and 70’s due to war rationed paper or something, which may have been why I’d never heard of her till last year when I stumbled on her book at Barnes and Noble. They seem to be reprinting the more witty books that she has written (The Buncle trio of books is somewhat of a satire, but I do enjoy it) – but I’m hoping they will choose some of the more character involved stories she has written to publish next. And she takes you to Scotland and England with her beautiful depictions of the scenery… She wrote in a time (30’s -70’s) when writers were able to weave their faith in so naturally… and is even related to the other famous writer, Stevenson.

  9. salina19 says:

    I love this! I’m a wordsmith and love to use and find new words. 🙂 My best friend teases me all the time for throwing in one of those words here or there. lol

    As a photographer, I can’t help but see His beauty all around me, but I particularly liked this post because my favorite photography is macro.

    Beautiful words below:
    “As He has made us all artists after His own heart, given artist eye as inheritance, let us recognize the Holy Spirit tingle in our hands and ask Him to pour His beauty through them!”

    • You sound like a kindred spirit in many ways, Salina! 🙂 I’m not a professional photographer by any means, but I do love to take photos… they do make you see the world in frames, much like drawing does too for me. I feel the same way… noticing the beauty around. Thank you for your lovely words here! Wordsmiths stick together 🙂 Thanks for “liking” this post too!

  10. Marissa D says:

    Loving how another author’s words can so stay with you, and inspire your thought. You portrayed this so well here, love it!

    Thanks for sharing with Cozy Reading Spot

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