Saturday, February 2, 2019

Blazing Star

Passing through the landscape planting at the entrance to the new Bell Museum, I was struck by the persistently pink among a tawny sea -the blazing star, possibly Liatris aspera -rough blazing star. 

Here, at age 18, another persistently blazing star who brought to my young world wonderfully scented tea roses, cloches, lavender and hardy ageratum, spring tulips and daffodils, dunking (not spraying) for a nickle a critter, garden flowers not florists, cuttings and rooting, weigelas and azaleas, cinnamon and chocolate.

At 99 she confessed to me that she did not love my grandfather as much as he loved her, but had a good life nonetheless, and that was all she ever said of it. Life is always more complex than we let on, but why go on about it? She the flower gardener, he the vegetable "farmer," each had their spaces, their gendered roles distinct, yet the young me watched them work together, modeling togetherness, a value she held higher than her own contentment. At 100, Anna's first selfie, above.

Anna Steinert Meuschke (1915-2019) died on New Year's Day at the age of 103. 

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