The Garden

The old woman sat in the rocking chair on the porch, her granddaughter Alice on the ground at her feet. It was a beautiful day and the they were taking time out to listen to the beautiful bird calls and feel the warmth of the sun's glow on their cheeks.

The wind was rustling gently through the trees, butterflies were flitting this way and that and the flowers were in bloom, their beautiful scent wafting across to where the women sat.

Alice was a beautiful girl. She had long dark hair, lush pink lips, long legs and a tall frame. She was dressed in a white dress that fell below her knees, finishing in lace delicately hand-sewn by herself. She often made her own dresses. It was hard and took a long time but the end result was worth it. She found that she was the most comfortable in her own dresses.

'Grandmother,' Alice said gently. 'Are the flowers not beautiful today?'

Her grandmother nodded, smiling. 'There are so many different colours today, child. Red, blue, purple, yellow and the green of the stems and leaves.'

Alice looked out over the lawn. 'And the butterflies, they are flittering care freely.'

'Yes, my dear, they are. Their magnificently coloured wings flash as they fold and unfold. Reach out your hand. You may catch one.'

Alice stretched out her right hand, giggling and waiting, but no butterfly flew near to her. Her grandmother chuckled.

'The sun is so beautiful, grandmother. It brings warmth to my heart, warmth to my toes and warmth to my spirit. It is truly the most precious creation.'

Her grandmother rocked slowly, a tear sliding down her cheek. She sniffed softly, trying to disguise it from Alice but the child sensed that something was wrong.

'What is it, grandmother? Have I made you sad?'

'No child,' the old woman replied. 'It is just that I feel bad myself.'

'Why?' Alice asked, slowly getting to her feet and wrapping her arms around her grandmother. 'The garden is flourishing, the birds are calling, the flowers are beautiful, the butterflies are flitting, the sun is warm and refreshing. What is there to feel bad about?'

'Oh my dear child,' the old woman said, smiling through a haze of tears. 'I feel bad that I have sight when you have none.'

Alice smiled. 'Grandmother, through you I see the world's beauty. I have no need for sight.'