Day 14: Stop and smell the roses

Nearly 30 years ago, I studied literature. My favorite era was American Lit from 1865-1900 with all the local color…a time when authors really began to write in the dialects of their subjects. I’ve always been drawn to purist reality. Language as it really is rather than as we think it should be or as we think others want to hear.

But, there was also a piece of me that loved that language that was difficult to understand but which sounded so romantic. Maybe that was inspired by my grandmother who taught me how to play Authors, a card game sort of like Go Fish, that matched book titles to their authors. One of the poems she introduced to me as a child sticks with me to this day. It’s a 17th-century poem  by Robert Herrick which begins like this:

Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
Old Time is quickly flying;
And this same flower which smiles today,
Tomorrow will be dying.

It was a poem that always reminded me to take advantage of what is around me at the moment, rather than waiting to enjoy it later. I use my china every day. I have lace that I love on display. I don’t wait for special days to celebrate with my favorite food. If there are flowers, I’ll stop to smell them and admire their uniqueness. Have you noticed what (or who) is around you?

DAY 14 HOMEWORK: Apply this principle to people. Take advantage of the beauty around you while you’ve got it. Tomorrow’s not promised.


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