Monday, April 28, 2014

Flower of Blood

True to my words i am back again...

With that aboriginal story. But the great talker that i am would not be satisfied if i'm not finished with what i have to say first.
It is strange how we can be miles apart and yet our stories have the same refrains. And in these stories we get to see teasers (for not knowing a better word i would prefer to call them that because i have not lived there to know it all) of the same rituals, cultures, beliefs and even dogmas...
When i had started out blogging i had done a post once which was followed by few others with stories linking the trees/plants and the first in the series was on Frangipani/ Plumeria which many of us in India know as Champa.   http://shivanidiwani64.blogspot.in/2010/04/whats-in-nameplumeria-or-frangipani.html

Not surprising then why Maneka Gandhi & Yasmin Singh's book ' Brahma's Hair' still remains one of my best books of all times.
''Ever wondered why coconuts are given as offerings in temples? Or why people prefer not to sleep under a tamarind tree? Or how the teak tree got its name
i actually blogged about this book too...

Now to the Flower of Blood...remember...yesterday's flower...Strut's Desert Pea/ Glory Flower/ Swainsona formosa the state floral emblem of South Australia...
This flower has a story too. A Koori story.
The Koori are the indigenous Australians that traditionally occupied modern-day New South Wales and Victoria.
http://www.kooriweb.org/foley/indexb.html 
And this is their story...a Koori story.

To the Kooris this flower is known as ' Flower of Blood '.
Legend has it that there was this beautiful young woman who did not want to get betrothed to this elderly man because she was in love with someone else. So to escape this sad marriage she eloped with her young lover. She and her lover took refuge in a relative's home far away and lived happily. Only thing this happiness was short lived. The shunned elderly man tracked the love birds down and mercilessly butchered both as well as the entire family of the relatives who had offered them refuge. Few years passed and one day that elderly man who had now become a tottering old lonely man was passing through that same place where he had slain the lovers and the relatives. He found the ground covered with blood. His eye sight had become poor. Fearing of some evil spirits he started shrieking and shivering in fear. His companions helped him and informed him that what he saw was not blood but that the ground was covered with, '' Flowers that looked like blood..."
Strut's Desert Pea... that's the story...short, tragic, mysterical...with all the trappings of believe it or not...
We have many stories like that too..of our own trees...sacred or otherwise.
Yeah one has to be obsessed like me to be able to read...about believing well that's another topic and maybe later...

And all this talk about Koori...takes me to the film Australia and no not Nicole Kidman but that unique bond between Nicole Kidman and Nullah. How can i not remember Nullah's grandfather...and now i'm wondering if he was a Koori too...he could speak to animals...talk long distances in whispers...and make things happen...

Much like how our saints and sages who have achieved these powers through penance are able to do...
Finally thoughts come and halt at this...
All differences in this world are of degree, and not of kind, because oneness is the secret of everything.
Swami Vivekanand
Also because my thoughts took me to that movie some endearing images of that movie Australia uploaded from the net because i would like them to be here on this page. After all love is also ONE. If only we can understand that... 


image courtesy:
http://silviadimauro.deviantart.com/art/Aborigeno-Film-Australia-276430035
http://leciliegiedelcinema.ilcannocchiale.it/?TAG=recensione



Glory be to this Pea

Ahh it feels so nice to be back again...
Straight to my nature find story...
i was waiting in the car as my husband walked into this corporate office of the famous builders in the city. Delhi is getting warmer day by day and besides the landscaping outside was just too breathtaking with a rich healthy- well- looked -after -variety to hold a garden enthusiast like me inside the car. And thus i walked out...and as i stepped out the first thing i saw...i had never seen before. And today it's only about that.

The flower looking strange...exotic...never seen before was right in front of me. It was in a container...a pot and there was just a single pot. Although the flower was a stunning blood red yet something was not right about the health of the plant. It was in sharp contrast to it's surroundings. Something pale and droopy ...something sick about the way the foliage looked...and because it was kept beneath a tree on that divider that separates the driveway from the parking lot i assumed it was purposely put there to get back some air and some nourishment. Perhaps the exotic was indoors in the plush reception area...

More perusal and thus more shots...luck favored me this time for i had my camera on me...in my smartphone...blessed technology i say.

Oh what a strange design...curves that tapered to a pointed like a needle tip...and a center that bulged with a glistening- like- raspberry- jelly- black- blob of a dot...and as if this was not all...
The needle like tip had hints of pure white...as if the artist had put His or Her final touches to the masterpiece. It was extremely engrossing this flower...and it could be because i was seeing it for the first time but definitely there was something very appealing about it's designing...just like the orchids...so i went as close as my eyes or the zoom could go...
Found the delicate veins...the dividing lines in the sepals and definitely the most attractive the protruding shining dark blob dots...
i looked anxiously for the gardener to help me know the name of this complex but stunningly beautiful flower. Had to walk around the campus. i found two guys watering a bed of lovely Petunias and requested them to ID the plant for me. Happily he said, " Maidam yeh geranium hai lekin iska seazon ab chala gaya..."(Madam this is Geranium but the season for this is over...)
 he went on and cruelly yanked off the lone pod which housed the precious seeds and crushed it in his hands. At that moment i did not like that man. Generally i respect gardeners but this type of gardener...is not my type.
(Madam this is Geranium but the season for this is over...)
i sat in the car...not angry but brooding over the fact that if the guy didn't know it what pleasure did it give him to pass me the wrong information. Perhaps it gave a kick to his ego by giving a wrong answer. But by being honest and saying , '' Madam i don't know" his ego would have deflated. And why the hell did he yank off the pod...what was the poor poor single pod doing to his ego. The pod didn't ask him the question i did...
Ego...uff...let's concentrate on the flower...perhaps...internet... 

Late in the night when Mr Google exhausted me it was ironical that when one Indian fellowman gave me gas it was another Indian website that gave me the ID. And that website is now like my encyclopedia when i have to know about any new flower i come across. http://flowersofindia.net/
And that's how i came to know all that i needed to know for the moment about the flower.
-commonly known as Glory Pea
- That it is also called Strut's Desert Pea.
-Swainsona formosa botanical name
-That it is a kind of a wildflower...
-that red with a black spot is known as the black boss
-also the state floral emblem of South Australia.

That's all for this day today...some aboriginal story too that i learnt about this flower but that in my next post...till then...stay put and pls pls don't give up on me...