“A Rose is a Rose is a Rose”

My Mom had a friend we just called “Booker“… She lived around the road from us … about a mile I guess… She was a neat lady… very interesting… She was always a little messy… always had a tale to tell… always had a flower or plant to give to my Mom … She had an overgrown yard filled with the most beautiful flowers  and her house reminded me of a stone cottage … She was married…her husband always seemed old to me …but, I didn’t see him often… He mainly stayed inside the house… I was never really inside the little stone house… but, I sure wanted to … It seemed a little mysterious “Booker” had an ugly bulldogfat and white in color … chained in the back yard… I had no desire to go near him… He was quite scary to me being 4 or 5 years old… This kind neighbor bought a scooter…almost like a golf cart  and she would be-bop up and down the road… going wherever she wanted… She would drop by unexpectedly early in the morning… She might have gotten a sale on bananas at the store and would have to share her bargain… And that is how she was… Friendly, sharing, caring… She knew everyone on our county road … and she loved my Momma…who she called “Nina”… My mom’s name was Hazel Niner…so it seems that last names were used a lot with these friends… When she came by early I remember her eating anything leftover from breakfast … that my Mom had saved just for her in case she came by… and enjoying a hot cup of coffee anytime of year… Later in her life “Booker” bought a van… reminded me of a Hippie Van …and she would buzz around in it just as she had with the scooter… She would take us to the bus line … take my sister to work up at the drug store … She was always available for anyone in need… I started thinking about the Rose  that I have planted in my yard… It has the sweetest fragrance and is a long-stemmed bright red rose “Booker” gave one rose to my Mom, telling her how to get it started… and it grew and grew… When my Mom moved to an apartment  after my Dad passed… she took her Rose and planted it… When Mom moved in with me I transplanted the Rose to my flowerbed … I just recently placed a cutting of it in my sweet unique vase on my windowsill … As I look at it the memories abound as you can see… and by the way, The Rose has a name…”Booker”… with “Hazel” not too far from it only it’s a white Rose … probably should have called it “Nina”…

Gertrude Stein  coined the phrase “A rose is a rose is a rose” meaning…”Things are what they are”… in 1913,  for a poem “Sacred Emily“…


“My Kids!”…

I know Joy, one our Special Ed students didn’t know where the phrase “Stop and Smell the Roses” came from, but she loved using it… and seemed  to at least know the meaning… A cliché“Take Time to Enjoy the Pleasures of Life”… “Take a Little Time for Yourself  EveryDay”… “Don’t Get Too Busy to Enjoy Life”… But it might be a variant on a similar saying, “Stop and smell the flowers” – which is a misquote of advice from the golfer Walter Hagen   that appeared in the 1956 book “The Walter Hagen Story”…

“You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry. Don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way”.

However this saying began… I’ll always remember it as “Joy’s Advice” as she shared these words of wisdom to those around her… Joy, I hope you… will always have a fragrant rose  to perfume the air around you…

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