Roses in the Window
When you see a window like this, you want one of several things. If you’re particularly dreaming, you want a fairy or a ghost. A fairy or a ghost should definitely be looking in just such a window, with the medieval ironwork and the glazed glass. If you are a high school student unfortunate enough to be force-fed Shakespeare, perhaps you think unwillingly of Romeo and Juliette—because there is a rose or two and roses and lovers go together, don’t they, like laundry and detergent or coffee and cream.
But if you are me and your picture is larger than a few inches wide, you’d see that the wall the vine clings to is rude and shabby. You’d see the bicycle leaning in the weeds and the patchy lawn. And you’d see that the man trimming the dead leaves is dressed in jeans and a worn-out comfortable shirt, a slim and relaxed-looking man with none of the flare or knock-out beauty of a photograph.