Nov 28, 2017

As anyone who has seen my paintings or read this blog knows, it appears that I have something of an obsession with tulips. They are at once elegant, simple, playful, serious, honest and mysterious. Their colors are infinite and their curves both seductive and innocent.

Mirroring cultural biases I tend to select pristine subjects, their frills plump and brightly colored arches robust and compelling. This time I selected a slightly different subject.

There were age spots on this beauty. In a few days the petals would thin and crinkle becoming almost translucent, curling in on themselves before falling to the mantle and ushered into the dustbin.

Maybe it's a response to what I see in the mirror most mornings but I am increasingly reluctant to replace these flowers as they fade. There was a time when I could feel a man's eyes upon me as I entered a room. I'm not sure exactly when it happened but unless I'm walking into a talk about Social Security filing strategies it just isn't the same these days.

I have more compassion for these blossoms which become more and more difficult to call blossoms. What should we call them then? I don't know. I do know that they are still worthy of our admiration. They are still beautiful. They are unique and sometimes tenacious refusing to give up their stem. I love them all the more.

Painting: Grace © Lissa Banks 2017