Just Pretty Roses, Please

pretty rose ~d nelson

It was a good day for him
paying attention, on purpose
becoming aware of unpleasant physical feelings
he took notice of nearby beautiful rose, intentionally.

pretty rose 10

pretty rose 10

500 years before Christ
Confucius wrote of the roses in the Imperial Gardens.
Centuries of Rosa cultivation now offers him
an instant source of beauty & fragrance
from the so-called Queen of Flowers.

pretty rose 7

pretty rose 7

A good sun-shining morning with coffee
sent him joyfully on his way.
While on the public transit
he witnesses a passenger get beaten by a gang of teens
angered when they were asked to quiet down.
All day he looked forward to smelling the roses.

pretty rose 8

pretty rose 8

Even when dwelling pleasantly in the present moment
feeling a loved one’s embrace & bright presence,
thoughts of past heroics & failures appear from nowhere
and send him soaring into blissful, nostalgic never, never land
or streets of racial, social, economic inequities, & war
or into a courtroom where his ex-beloved brutally
attacks with a lawyer extracting more than a pound of flesh;
and then thoughts of future’s uncertainty, oh, my
all this & more…
calling for an extra bouquet of grounding, healing power.

pretty rose 8

pretty rose 8

He may understand the notion that experiencing
suffering is essential
for compassion & true understanding to blossom;
no mud, no lotus.
But he can’t help but wonder if
it could be possible to soak in roses’ essence
a little longer, a little more sweeter
before the upcoming, next mud bath.

Does the rose have to do something?
No, the purpose of a rose is to be a rose.
Your purpose is to be yourself.
You don’t have to run anywhere to become someone else.
You are wonderful just the way you are…
~Thich Nhat Hanh, A Rose is a Rose is a Rose


72 thoughts on “Just Pretty Roses, Please

  1. Walking My Path: Mindful Wanderings in Nature

    You are wonderful.
    These roses are beyond compare. They are loved and tended well, like in The Little Prince.
    Thank you for showing us true beauty, David.

  2. The Crazy Crone

    Lovely images. I’m just waiting for the first of our Apothecary’s buds to burst into blossom – they have a huge centre and they are an ancient rose native to the Turkish region. My favourite rose! We also have another yellow rose about to burst into flower, and this one we planted last year in memory of Ziggy, our 2-year-old dog who just suddenly declined and passed away within a week, heart-breaking.

  3. Cate

    Darn those mud baths! Appreciated your perspective and gentle humor, my friend. And I sure can relate! Also,beautiful images.

  4. AmyRose🌹

    Your beautiful blooms
    stole my breath
    stilling the heart
    as my soul soared
    to limits unheard.
    Bless you, David, for this heart touching post. Thank goodness for the beauty of the rose especially after those mud baths. ❤

  5. Tippy Gnu

    When the rose thorn
    Pricks the finger
    Perhaps it’s best
    To be mindful of the pain
    Without forgetting the scent.
    I hope your week will be full of roses, SmileCalm!

  6. sasokisoaps

    Hello David,
    I am guessing the “he” in your writing is yourself? I often wonder why you choose the third person – a more distant writing, or not of yourself? If of you, then it sounds like you are processing some darker moments. Sending you best wishes and hopes for the rose petals to help with the journey through the mud, and for you to find your own inner rose (as per Thich Nhat Hanh), and embrace the “I”. If you know what I mean…
    With wishes for quiet inner joy,

    1. smilecalm Post author

      Thank you Sarah
      for your kind wishes!
      The fictional characters used
      in my stories coincidentally
      biographically reflect me, personally.
      Smilecalm is a much more
      interesting & appealing character 🙂

      1. sasokisoaps

        Ahh 😊, I hope that in embracing Smilecalm, you also embrace yourself then 🌹
        Have you ever read “The Peaceful Warrior” by Dan Millman? It’s an oldie but a goodie…

  7. Annika Perry

    Beautiful and tender as the blooms themselves. May we all find the peace within us in this chaotic world to enjoy the serenity of a rose..to learn to find the complete us within ourselves.

  8. Aquileana

    Beautiful roses and such touching words… I like the fact that you even included philosophical quotes alongside your musings… very nice post.
    All my best wishes. Aquileana ❤️😺

  9. Michael

    I liked very much this story of a rose that walks in the world, to visit these strange places and carry the fresh scent of peace, and the memory of holy places thousands of years old that live inside of us. It is not easy to do. Reflecting on this and the colorful images shared here, I feel the most beautiful rose you have cultivated is the one you carry with you wherever you go, in the quiet of your heart.


  10. Dennis the Vizsla

    hello smilecalm its dennis the vizsla dog hay those roses shoor ar byootiful!!! we hav sum roses heer sum smel nice sum smel like nuthing they hav ben heer longer then i hav despite the relentless efferts of sumthing calld thrips to destroy them!!! ok bye

  11. bruce thomas witzel

    A beautiful personal reflection David, on ‘roseness’… thorns and all… life, with all the joy and suffering.

    I want to thank you so much for sharing the video link of the Q&A question period with Thay from his last Deer Park Retreat, Oct. 2014, if I recall that correctly… wasn’t that the time you were heading out to the retreat and misplaced the keys to your car?. Fran laughed so much about that story.

    Back to the video … this week throughout the evenings I watched it in about 4 – 30 minute segments.The first night I was so moved by the first two questions – one on the lad who had lost his father to cancer, and the 2nd who described his addiction with video games. The manner which Thay responds was so relate-able to some of my own experiences. For one… as he spoke, I realized that my father and mother are not really ‘gone’. I’ve read before where Thay speaks of this… but hearing him speak it out loud was more powerful. All the subsequent questions and answers were so valuable also.

    I love Thays’ humour, but especially his compassion. The question that you asked him moved me on a few different levels that I wouldn’t attempt to articulate here … suffice to say that this evening with Francis, I shared this last part of the video again, and we were connected with you.in a special way.

    Ah David, the wonders and the joys. Thanks again, in true friendship, Bruce

    1. smilecalm Post author

      I’m do happy to hear of your taking time to listen to the Q&A with Thay and get some personal benefit, Bruce! Answers he gives are almost always revealed during talks, but getting a personal answer has been very helpful for many, including me, to clear out uncertainties and move closer to freedom. May we all live free despite what keeps us imprisoned 🙂

  12. Sarah

    “But he can’t help but wonder if
    it could be possible to soak in roses’ essence
    a little longer, a little more sweeter
    before the upcoming, next mud bath.”
    This will keep me smiling for hours. Thank you. 😀


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