Friday, February 24, 2017

Lost in the Art Gallery

As pretty as the landscape is now, shrouded in white with impressive icicles threatening to drag eaves troughs from roofs, I’m beginning to miss color — real colors, not indoor TV colors, but colors produced by nature.

That’s what I was thinking the other day while at my local hardware store browsing an extensive display of seeds. And then I began to think of summer gardens and burgers on a barbecue, probably because of the barbecue in the corner, marked down for an unlikely winter sale.

I refocused on the seeds and I was no longer in a hardware store, but in an art gallery of miniature still lifes. I gazed at the packets of rosy red tomato seeds, marveled at the complex shading in the ruffled leaves of Romaine lettuce, I compared the subtle hues of the shiny green peas, and I admired the glamour shots of the ornamental gourds. Then it was on to the flower seeds — bouquet after bouquet, tiny images of exquisite beauty, each one screaming buy me, buy me.

And I did, but I only bought a single packet of seed, and what’s more, there wasn’t even a picture of a flower on it. It was the name that caught my eye — Columbine (Aquilegia).

Now, I’m a sucker for columbine; it’s one of my favorite flowers, but beneath the species name on the simple white packet, in large uppercase letters it said: Lime Sorbert.
Lime Sorbert? Despite the misspelling, the urge to buy seeds combined with images of sizzling burgers then culminated with a flash image of a dripping lime sorbet. How could I resist?

Am I the only one who shops in this way, allowing a stream of consciousness to influence my decisions? I’d only gone in the store to buy screws; at least that’s what I told myself. Oh well, regardless of how I got there, I came home with a packet of seeds to add to the pile that I’m already coaxing into life, but I can always squeeze one more columbine into my garden.

When I left the store, clutching my packet of seed, it was snowing again and the summer images quickly dimmed, except for the sizzling burger. Just had to make one more stop before heading home.