Saturday, 29 December 2012

12 Days of Christmas: Flowers

So we come to day five of the 12 Days of Christmas blog hop and our prompt is: Flowers, though is not really what I'd call a gift...perhaps another warning...

Photograph by Lisa Shambrook found at

Rays of sun fell onto pale pink candytuft interspersed with lavender, while tall, magenta foxgloves with mottled tubes, and variegated greenery gave the display height. Two oriental poppies, with silken, paper-thin petals adorned the arrangement and in the centre sat an arum lily in all its glorious purity.
If there was anything she spent time on it was her garden, and her indoor displays were as heavenly as the well-tended outdoor ones.
This arrangement sat on her windowsill, in pride of place, beneath the frilled jardinière net curtains. A different floral attraction decorated her sill every week, without fail.

 The neighbours were used to her colourful bouquets and ox-eye daises made them smile, blood-red roses brought on flushes of romance and huge purple alliums caused a stir.

So on Monday morning, when the lily trumpet and silken poppies still flourished in the window, the postman raised his eyebrow, the milkman smiled, and the neighbours assumed she was just late with her floristry scissors.
They were still there on Tuesday, and Wednesday, but it had been pouring with summer rain, so maybe the garden was just too wet for old Mrs Thomas.
Thursday was dry, and the poppy petals were wrinkled.
On Friday the candytuft and poppies were sad, they drooped and a day later the poppies black, inky stamens were adorning the actual windowsill and not the flowers.

During the third week the flowers began to brown and dehydrated stems hung limply over the side of the vase…and the neighbours shook their heads in disapproval.

A week later, and the postman noticed not only the papery, brown blooms, but the far less than flowery stench that permeated the house when he lifted the letter box…
The flowers had spoken for weeks, but no one had heard…

(298 Words)
Day Five: May - Flowers
Read the others...they're worth it!


  1. Oh god, how horrific, you caught me out with this one, cleverly written :)

  2. Oh so sad... it's like her house was a tomb and she'd made her own wreathes :-(

  3. How sad..., how sad that no one thought before then to check on her. But lovely prose, Lisa.

  4. Beautiful, Lisa. I love how you use the flowers as a metaphor for what is going on with the characters.

  5. Thank you all...sometimes you need to write about the difficult things in life.
    PS. Sophie, I love writing with flowers!

  6. Such a sad story. But, I've seen things like it happen in real life. That makes it even more life-like. Love how you illustrate the story with the flowers.

  7. Beautifully written, Lisa; heartbreaking, but beautiful. A sad little snapshot of an all too believable situation. And ditto re: Sophie's comment about your use of flowers as metaphor--lovely!