What Lies Within

Is there anything more astonishing that the flowering of an amaryllis? One day, a rough brown mass with tangled roots sits on your table and soon after a glorious and sensual bloom greets you upon entering the room. The transformation always gives me pause. What astonishing beauty might arise from within each of us?


It was like a crime scene: the beauty lay on the floor, mangled and broken; a mess of soil and tangle of roots lay about her. Alas, it was the amaryllis’s own radiance that did her in. Her blossoms grown so heavy atop the three-foot stalk that she tumbled off the table to the floor just two days after opening. Stricken in her prime— and while having her portrait painted!— I salvaged what I could, dissected one flower for study, and finished these pages. I have spent the last month astonished by… Read More

The Beauty of Bulbs

What amazes me about amaryllis is the fact that a homely brown sphere the size of a softball can contain within it the potential for bold red blossoms to burst forth from its interior with a minimum of effort on my part. How incredible! I realize that onions and garlic are capable of similar feats, but it’s hard for them to compete. This is the last day that this particular bulb will fit on an 8-inch page at full size— it’s growing at about a half-inch a day— but you can be… Read More