Redbud for Mama

The summer before my mother died, we were talking about her wishes--what we should do with her body. She wanted to be cremated--no surprise to me--and to have her ashes put with those of our beloved cats and dogs who had predeceased her. "I don't know," she said, "plant a redbud or something. I love redbuds."

That fall it occurred to me that if mama loved redbuds so danged much that she'd want to be planted with one, perhaps I should plant one for her while she was still alive.

She died a week before the first redbuds bloomed.

That year our tree had one tiny little blossom. The next year, three. And so on. It seems I planted the world's most reluctant redbud. It doesn't help that every year I talk about fertilizing and forget to do it.

Anyway, this year every little branch has some blossoms on it. I wouldn't say the tree is covered, but it looks much less like Charlie Brown's redbud. And so, tonight as I was going out for my evening photo shoot, I took a picture of Mama's redbud for her. This is for you, Mama.


  1. My mama's memory and memorial is the gazanias that still bloom in front of her house.

  2. This makes my heart feel warm and full...