Listening to the Lotus

Photo of an opened lotus flower. Pink petals and the seed pod in the center is yellow.

The lotus bud of closed petals, like a cat sleeping in a rolled ball, is silent as it inhales air and sunlight, listens and learns words from other plants. When the petals begin to lower, opening, the lotus’s voice is small and unsure. Such as it is with young flowers and insects and birds and most animals. Not like young humans, who wail to be heard. When fully open the lotus’s pink petals sing, adding a delicate voice to the music around them. The lotus’s song and luminous petals invite people to gaze into it, mandala-like, and see other worlds: pink skies, cities among trees, people who can breathe underwater, tall ships sailing in the sky. Each person sees a world of their liking. The lotus embraces the hope that when each person looks away, they will see the wonder of the real world around them. The grip of the petals fades as the flower ages. The petals fall one by one. Sad for the falling. Thankful for their chance under the sun. Curious about the ground and what happens next. Above the fallen petals, the seed pod is like a small speaker. Singing a different song now. A song about new generations of musicians, about possibilities. 

Photo of a lotus seed pod. No petals are attached to it. The pod is no longer yellow and has turned to green.

Photos were taken at Grounds for Sculpture (Hamilton, New Jersey) in July 2021.
copyright © 2021 Dave Williams

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