“When you have only two pennies left in the world, buy a loaf of bread with one, and a lily with the other.”
There is something so beautiful about a flower that dies, a sunset that sets, a sunrise that rises.
There is something so romantic about a season that changes, about a year that comes to a close, about a book that comes to an end. There is something delicious about a meal that is finished, a cup of coffee that is emptied, a kiss that lasts only for a time, and a glance that is momentarily stolen.
There is something exciting about a hike that peaks at the top of the mountain, a vacation that is timed, and a wedding day that lasts but a day.
Why don’t we decorate our homes and our gardens in plastic and silk flowers that never die and never stop blooming? And if we could, would we paint the sky in a permanent sunset? Or a forever sunrise? Would we freeze one season and have it be winter year round? Or summer? Would we live the same year over and over again, if we could? Or read a book without an end? Would we still enjoy a meal or a cup of coffee that we can never finish? Would a kiss or a glance carry the same meaning if it lasted forever? Would we still hike if the hike was eternal? Or value our vacation time if it was infinite? Would we still want to have a wedding day if it lasted forever?
But, there is something beautiful about a flower that dies.
I hear it over and over again, that a life that ends and is not followed by an eternity of bliss is pointless, purposeless, hopeless and vain.
I don’t know what follows after death and I don’t know where I will go, in the same way I don’t know what comes before life, or where I was before I was born. These things are unknown to me, and I am okay with not knowing.
I do not believe that just because I don’t know, or because there is nothing after this existence that life is pointless, meaningless, vain, hopeless or purposeless. Instead I think it is full of purpose, it is full of meaning, of beauty, of wonder, of fragrance, of depth, and the point of it is to live. To live every moment of every day, to breathe in and inhale the beauty around, to love, to be grateful, to appreciate and rejoice in today, in the now.
Even though I understand that flowers die, I can never go to a local market without walking away without a fresh bouquet of beautiful blooms.
The fact that they die, doesn’t make me appreciate their fragrance and beauty any less, in fact, it makes me value them more.
Because there is something beautiful about a flower that dies.
Author: Inna Stasyuk
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Michelle Milla/Flickr