My grandmother always grew roses, and in our own small garden there were several shrubs of small pink roses. I liked to pick the petals off each one, gathering them in my hand, fingers closed, until I had an abundance and I could throw them up in the air like pink confetti.
The saying goes: take time to smell the roses, and although it is an overused cliché, there may still be wisdom in that advice. For, we may always find pleasure in a rose garden.
For instance, the Italians of the Renaissance, the French Impressionists, and the English gardener's of the Victorian era all took time to smell the roses; planting them in vast gardens that were separated from the traditional herb and vegetable plots, where flowers were grown for a medicinal purpose.
These jardins d'agrément, or gardens of pleasure, were created simply to be enjoyed - for walks, for picnics, for paintings and happy meetings, for ornament and sweet perfumes, and for the delight of all that looked on them. In those days, a rose garden was a retreat, where one could take tea, listen to music, and watch the play of light and shade over the flowers.
A ROSE Spell
to bring oneself closer to nature
If one wishes to become closer with nature, and to enjoy a few moments of beauty, then this is a charming ritual to undertake.
- Go into a garden, and walk in meditation, slowly gathering the petals of one large and two small purple roses, then endow these with the light of the moon by placing them on your windowsill at night. It is a lovely thing to do, to say a quick hello to the moon while you are doing so.
- Then take one scoop of fresh snow, or of spring water, and place the rose petals into a glass jar along with your snow or water. Place this in the sun in the afternoon, while basking in the warmth alongside them.
- Finally, use your rose petal concoction to make a herbal tea or a bath, letting the hot water release all the sweet perfumes of the crushed petals.