Marigolds & Petunias

The municipal gardeners have planted marigolds and petunias in the raised beds along South Marine. I’ve never really liked marigolds. They were ubiquitous in the gardens of my childhood. They seem, rather like carnations, too tight a bloom. They don’t evolve into anything bigger or blousier. They are neat and orderly. And without much scent, ‘cept for a trace of something like honey. Petunias are different, they can run riot. They grow and appear to multiply. To a hesitant gardener like myself they are a joy. But I like the life they offer. This can be a grey town at times, particularly in the rain, so colour, any colour is gratefully received.

I’ve heard a helicopter over head these last two nights. Perhaps they are searching for some missing person, or maybe taking a hospital patient to specialised care elsewhere. It’s an insistent noise, a buzzing that interrupts my sleep. Last night there was a child voice too coming up from the path below my window. It had a Chinese lilt to it. We could have a picnic, it said.

The rain kept revellers indoors. Just a few were out.

I cried about it. I hadn’t realised I was so concerned. He tells me it is up to me that they can’t bully me into doing something I don’t want to do. We shall see. Meanwhile, I seek help elsewhere.

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.