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The Avondale Poets
Alison McLachlan - Crowe


Let Flowers Speak
by Alison Elizabeth nee McLachlan-Crowe Hallak

In Memory of
Ian Harold McLachlan-Crowe
Born  29 June 1942 @ Hurstville NSW
Died  5 January 2004 @ Lake Cargellico NSW

"Where's the key, Mum?  Is it in the violets?" questioned tiny trusting face.
Little boy noticed that ... within violet patch was safest hiding place.
Even at years of five, he chose gently to  ... "say it with flowers".
Through many years thus he would say, be it warming sun or cooling showers.
Whatever occasion, he thought  "saying it with flowers" was the very best talk.
Be it wedding day,  "get well" wishes soon, or sweethearts' first courtship walk.

When his parents were buying fine family home, this readily meant
Great cost at first Christmas there,  gift giving was scant, one ... loving present.
His sister & he woke on Xmas morn ...  to find pink primula in bright garden pot.
He learnt right then that to have one large expense, meant sacrificing quite a lot.
The father, gardener of repute, To "say it with flowers" was also his way.
Lesson of  "Primula in the Pot" understood, as young boy went outdoors to play.

Down by the orchid house where his father's prize orchids multiplying enhanced.
Gallant youth sang Elvis Presley's amorous lyrics. Sweetheart gracefully danced.
Close by  ...  mulberry tree with juicy fruit to eat ...  when season was timely,
Gave delicious berries for these two to taste ... but not always sublimely.
Native lillypilly tree ... another tree with purple berry ... was growing close by.
It bade ... "Come eat." ... Some lookers ate ... this dainty delight of the eye.

With wife & first son, lived & worked in  "The Land of the Long White Cloud".
Unavoidably missing sister's wedding celebration, far from maddening crowd.
To show loving thoughts of her grand occasion, he sent on that sunshiny day
Inter Flora  'cross Tasman,  snowy white blooms on thoughtful word-laden way.
Once again adhering to fond belief in worthwhile goodness of true flower-giving,
Whispers within flora heard,  "May happiness ever-after, be yours in the living".

Forward thinking this young man, with now two sons, buying family home,
Chose site where waratahs grew majestically high in mountain native bush loam.
Gum trees & other Aussie flora crowded the valleys, dense, wild, lovely & rare.
Bushland echoed agreement  "to say it with flowers" reveals mankind does care.
Nearer family home, he planted exotic garden like his father had done before.
Azaleas guarded fenceline & gate. Ivy crept upstairs & peeped in his front door.

One day in wise maturity gave advice to young lad, at hour now in time faraway.
Asked best way to win teenage lass, upon whom lad's affection unable to stray.
Delighted he was that young lad had come to him, on perplexing questioning day.
Responded, "Why young fellow, you 'say it with flowers'.  That's the best way".
This heart-given advice was followed precisely by handsome eager young swain.
Because flowers were his bright ambassador, he was welcomed again & again.

To bid farewell to his much loved Dad, came sad time to ponder & sigh.
As he walked in his Dad's garden, where ghost gum trees stretch high to the sky,
Plucked from his father's favourite tree, twig of long-bladed eucalyptus gumtips.
The like once had played stirring martial tunes upon his father's musical lips.
"Ghost gum" leaf spray was placed with wreath on his father's coffin with love.
Bush aroma would journey with father's soul to The Heavenly Land up Above.

Increasing maturity, time when older age finds weaknesses of each human frame,
Saw sister's turn with adversity. She went to hospital. Later the specialist came.
Before departure for hospital at her door ... from friendly florist nearby
Arrived beautiful array of bush flowers, in wet tray, to keep moist from the dry.
Brother's thoughts were conveyed by supporting strong stem for each bloom.
Essence was of best  "get well" wishes, also be back soon to vanquish the gloom.

Later in life again,  he implored flowers honestly, appropriate message to speak.
This time bouquet was for loved wife, suffering from cancer, sickly & weak.
Beautiful flora once more snowy-white, symbolic of great admiration & true love.
Other flower-speaking words, be brave & welcome peace in form of pure dove.
Blooms with devoted bonding thoughts, memory-laden of radiant days ago
When wedded bliss enraptured, shone around both & radiantly they were aglow.

So now we are reverently here. To this good man we'll  "say it with flowers".
It's start of year in our dry parched land. Desperate need is for showers.
To this man, lover of beauty, who heard magical words all flowers are saying,
Is given own floral tribute with boundless love over-weighing.

Behold ...

gumleaves, bushbracken, purple iris, white chrysanthemums, red bud-roses atop,
Native foliage with exotic blooms, his goodbye wreath makes magnificent crop.
Floral tribute to him now with his own past flower gifts interweaving.
Listen, heed message to all, God's Creation believing, will lighten all grieving.

written by -
Alison Elizabeth   (McLachlan - Crowe)  Hallak
17 January 2004
@ Tahmoor  NSW  Australia


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