Each spring Prayer Bench in Canada and Kereru Publishing in New Zealand offer a program called Stroll for Your Soul. Stroll offers 21 days of accompaniment through a brief email delivered early each morning to your inbox. Each email will offer a practice, or a reflection, or a poem, or a photograph giving direction and encouragement to your time spent walking or jogging or biking or sitting in your favourite chair.
If you missed Stroll in the Northern Hemisphere, it is now Spring in New Zealand and you can sign up as an individual or register a group.
Here is an excerpt from Stroll for Your Soul, Day 8.
Queen Anne’s Lace is one of spring’s wildflowers in the part of Canada where I live. It is a roadside flower growing wild. Some would call it a weed. It’s a hardy plant and can endure a dry summer. I like Queen Anne’s Lace. I always find myself attracted to the plant when I’m out for a walk.
Legend has it that the plant is named after Queen Anne of England who was sewing fine lace similar in pattern to the flower. She pricked her finger and the drop of red blood looked like the red flower in the centre of the Queen Anne’s Lace plant. That’s the story.
The flower cluster starts out curled, then opens for pollination, then rolls tight into a “bird’s nest” waiting for the seeds to ripen. Once opened in late fall, the seeds are carried away by the wind.
The delicate Queen Anne’s Lace is a beautiful example of a floral fractal. Each blossom produces smaller repeating blooms of the same structure.
There is wisdom to be found in this persistent and enduring (some would say noxious) street-wise flower. Are their Queen Anne’s Lace plants on your path? Perhaps today you will contemplate her hardiness and willingness to persist in all conditions. Or perhaps today you will be like Queen Anne’s Lace and claim sanctuary of the nesting time. She is a contemplative-in-actionm scattering her handful of seeds into the world to make a difference.
The Southern Hemisphere Stroll begins with a welcome email on Wednesday 2 September. You will receive daily emails from 5-25 September.