The rosebud in our garden is a fat pinky finger–leaves condensed, color concentrated. It unfolds, like a baby would unroll his fist. I don’t have green fingers and never pay much attention to that hidden alcove out front, but this flower catches my attention because of its color. It’s unusual for a rose and it’s my favorite. The deep violet turns, petal by uncurling petal, into a blushing lilac. It grows alone, far away from the yellow roses that stand under the spotlight by the door.
As I follow its blooming progress, I wonder why the owner decided to plant it exactly there. Was it too rare to mix with the ordinary whites, too exquisite to push from the soil of the middle-class ferns? Or would the ordinary Yesterday-Today-and-Tomorrow have rejected it with a jealous envy, hurting its rosebud feelings?
The purple rose stands alone in her glory, attracting admiring glances from titled sunflower heads and gossipy whispers from the coral tree’s green-eyed leaves. When her time is done, she drops her petals, browning around the edges like burnt paper, and once more becomes an ordinary rose bush, strangely hidden in an alcove of a garden that is not my own.