A Tonic

Afternoon in the Cluny Garden, Paris

A Garden

The Edge of the Woods

Greenwich Garden

Backyard with a Cat

In Vorhee's Garden

Sleeping Cat

An unashamedly indulgent post filled with artwork that makes me feel good, because it’s been a long and tough week. I’ve been reading the Gardener’s Nightcap by Muriel Stuart each night this week. It’s acted like a drowsy tonic: I read it for five minutes, and start to feel sleepy. Not because it’s boring, but because it calms me down. A few passages I’ve ear-marked are little gems:

Many of these small things which show to the world the merest tuft of cobweb green, or a rosette of silver, have legs ten times as long, which must be allowed to stretch down, down in cool moist soil. It is a crime to possess oneself of plants without knowing how to rear them. We rarely make any other purchase in so casual a way. (p. 27)

There are flowers which resent disturbance. They have builded great beauty, compact, fragile, complicated; taking months, perhaps years of secret labour to produce their finished work of art. Why should they not resent being torn limb from limb between the prongs of forks, or being wrenched out like a drawn tooth? Butchered to make a gardener’s holiday? They resent disturbance. I do. (p. 197)

What could be more heavenly than to walk in such an orchard, to sit by the pool and watch in it the reflection of the still branches, to see the petals dropping on the quiet coloured stone, and on the moonlit night behold the trees in their ghostly bridal white? (p. 38)

What indeed. Have a good weekend everyone.

Image credits (top to bottom): Afternoon in the Cluny Garden, Paris, by Charles Courtney Curran; A Garden by Gaines Ruger Donoho; The Edge of the Woods by Charles Courtney Curran; Greenwich Garden by John Twachtman; Backyard with a Cat by Abbott Fuller Graves; In Vorhee’s Garden by Matilda Browne; Sleeping Cat by Pierre Auguste Renoir.