The Apotheosis of Flowers

OK, here’s a chance to get more people to read about Larry Rose, and fold in another great San Francisco tip.  Recently psychologist Harriet Lerner, author of The Dance of Anger and, most recently, Marriage Rules: A Manual for the Married and the Coupled Up, praised Geography of the Heart:  A Memoir on All Things Considered.  The full text of her review may be found / listened to on this site on the page for Geography, but herewith, a particular sentence she quoted:  “He brought flowers — not your garden-variety carnations and mums, but fabulous arrangements of tropical flora with unpronounceable names and big hair.”

That sentence took me back to those arrangements, which I can see, oh, how I can see them here and now, more real than the real.

But there’s also the real thing, still in business, and here is a link to their homepage:

This is the shop where Larry bought those “fabulous arrangements,” and they are the greatest, the apotheosis of flowers.


  1. #1 by Connie on April 8, 2012 - 7:16 pm

    Regarding flowers…beautiful. Regarding Geography of the Heart…heard about it on NPR, read it, loved it. As an expat southerner confilicted on many issues related to my upbringing (race, religion, poverty, gender, sexuality), I searched for a saner, gentler way of life. Your book reminded me of the beauty and tradition I left behind. Thank you for a lovely journey.

  2. #2 by Rachael on May 17, 2012 - 1:38 pm

    I’m loving your book. Thanks for sharing this story.

  3. #3 by Fenton Johnson on May 17, 2012 - 4:01 pm

    Thanks, Rachael, for troubling to write. I assume you mean Geography of the Heart? I’m glad to hear that Larry lives on.

  4. #4 by Becky on August 13, 2012 - 4:24 pm

    Just wanted to say how much I adore Geography of the Heart. I used to read it all the time whenever I would go to William Paterson’s campus library to study. Things from this beautiful book often pop into my head at random moments, like Larry’s affinity for desserts, or his use of strong cologne. It’s wonderful that this place is still in business.

  5. #5 by Sue Luttner on October 25, 2012 - 4:48 pm

    Well that was a charming adventure. Thank you for the tip. At the risk of cliche, the ixia tour is kind of a metaphor for your writing: A series of striking vignettes, familiar yet surprising, balanced, reflective, and from a unique perspective.

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