New Year's flowers

I noticed while walking on the path to the front door of a nursing home this morning that pansies had recently been planted and were brazenly blooming in an area with a southwest exposure. In the hard freeze tonight they'll be killed but their presence was a nice reminder of the mild December we've had and that we'll see flowers  blooming there  again in a few months.

I was at the  nursing home to see a physically failing friend who still has his mental faculties. I suspect that he's asking himself how he fits into the cycles of death and birth as he looks out the window at the  windy, glittery head of the estuary and wonders whether he will see green trees again in the little park along the water.

-- Robert Whitcomb