Resist By Planting Flowers

One of the most horrible things at that time was to listen on the wireless to the speeches of Hitler—the savage and insane ravings of a vindictive underdog who suddenly saw himself to be all-powerful. We were in Rodmell during the late summer of 1939, and I used to listen to those ranting, raving speeches. One afternoon I was planting in the orchard under an apple-tree iris reticulata, those lovely violet flowers… Suddenly I heard Virginia’s voice calling to me from the sitting room window: “Hitler is making a speech.” I shouted back, “I shan’t come. I’m planting iris and they will be flowering long after he is dead.” – Leonard Wolf, in Downhill All The Way: An Autobiography of the Years 1919-1939

That picture up there is from my backyard – iris reticulata – planted last fall under my dogwood trees while my nation was electing a madman.

I don’t know that you have to plant flowers in order to resist – but you ought to be planting something.

One thought on “Resist By Planting Flowers

  1. […] It isn’t just about the vegetables, or the flowers, or even about chasing beauty as a means of self-care (as important as that is.) It is about creating beautiful things in defiance of a world gone mad. It’s about resisting – like this beautiful story I found about how Virginia Wolfe’s husband resisted Hitler by planting iris.  […]

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