The Body Electric: Day Twelve

I find the rose almost by accident.


It grows along the stairs to the backyard, struggling to bloom against the warmth of the concrete wall, right now, in the middle of December. I lean over the railing and finger its pink petals in wonder:  Could this be possible?  Now?

The rosebush is one of the ancient ones planted by our home’s original owner — its name a mystery, its scent headier than that of modern roses, so that the scent drifts through the yard like a cloud each June. But now … even now … it tries again.

I cut it and take it inside with me, into the warmth of the kitchen, where I stand quietly, stroking its velvet bloom down the curve of my cheek.  Its petals are crinkled by cold, darker than they should be, but still:  just a hint of that June scent.   I can’t get over it.



It’s a funny thing — isn’t it — the way some gifts come not when you’d expect them, but when you need them most?  And that’s what my life has felt like lately: one rich out-of-season gift after another.   A bloom in the darkest month of the year.

This is what I am thinking as I trim the stem and fit my undeserved gift into a milkglass vase.  Set it under the kitchen window, where its half-furled petals can open slowly in the sun. I breathe in the scent and think: God — oh, my God — I am grateful.


{Wonder what’s happening here?  For thirty days this December, I’m challenging myself to enjoy this body I’m living in:  to take pleasure in all my senses, to explore it and use it in new ways … and most of all, simply to cherish it.  I hope you’ll join me for the journey. <3}


  1. You’re so pretty! I just want to say I love what you are doing. I think everyone needs to appreciate the body they have been given, with all it’s flaws. You put it so poetically.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What kind words … Thank you. And you’re so right: we are ALL the recipients of a pretty amazing gift in the body. It’s an incredibly sophistic machine capable of giving us so very much joy. I’m learning to be so grateful for it. 🙂


  2. I love that you received this gift. This summer I went camping and hiking on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It was mid August – long past the rhododendron bloom. I love that magical time when all of them are in bloom, and the forest looks like it’s decorated for a royal wedding. I was sad I missed it, but I was happy to be enjoying blueberries and blackberries. On one hike, I came upon a single perfect rhododendron flower. I looked around to see if there was a pocket of late bloomers here. No. There was just one bloom. I’m quite sure it disappeared as I left. I know it was a gift just for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love moments like that. 🙂

      Did you know I live just a jaunt from the parkway? Oh, those early-summer clouds of pink and white petals on the mountains.

      I think we would make good hiking buddies. 😉


  3. Interesting. I was going to suggest that you turn your camera to the things/people/events you see. Outward rather than inward. 🙂
    You beat me to it.
    How about one outward for every inward photo?
    (Why don’t I mind my own business right?)
    Apart from that a rose in winter is a small miracle. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A rose in winter *is* a miracle, indeed. 🙂

      And yes, I know just what you mean.

      It’s a hard time of year for me, photographically speaking… Not as many subjects that interest me. I wrote about this for my day 13, actually!

      I’m deciding it’s a limitation that’s really just an invitation to think and create differently. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

              1. Ok. acromyms are very useful. thing is I used to do quite a bit of photography. Asahi-Pentax, multi-lens 35mm reflex camera. Then dropped it. Too much gear to carry. Then came the smarthpones, and now all I carry is my I-phone. And shoot whatever takes my fancy. With all the limitations of the single lens. But heck. What other camera fits in your back-pocket? Be good Ashley.

                Liked by 1 person

              2. People often say that the best camera is the one you have with you when you see the right shot… Which is why the iPhone is so fantastic.

                Think of all those moments we missed when we didn’t have our big clunky machines with us! (Although admittedly, I gave a soft spot for big clunky machines, too.) 🙂


  4. For me, finding a winter rose was always like walking into a sonnet. You captured its tranquility, fragility, and beauty so well. It *shouldn’t* be there, but it *is,* and its out-of-place-ness in the middle of winter’s chill makes it more special than all the summer roses combined. I feel like I need to go read some John Donne and Robert Herrick. Oh, it makes me a bit giddy!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s