K planted lemon verbena because it reminded her of her mother. There had been times, recently, when she found she couldn’t bring her mother’s face, or the tone of her voice to mind. They span her into a panic, these blank moments, sent her running for the line of photo albums in the room they called ‘the study’. She would sit and stare at her mother’s image, until she didn’t seem quite so far away.
Her mother had been one for pot pourri. When she died, K had gathered up a flotilla of tiny bowls crammed with cinnamon, chamomile, and the dried leaves of lemon verbena. She wished, later, that she hadn’t tipped the lot of it into one of the hundreds of dustbin liners she’d filled that month. As way of an apology, she visited the garden centre she suspects is going out of business and bought a lemon verbena in an orange plastic pot. The checkout assistant told her that if she drank it as a tea, it would stop her from dreaming. It hasn’t worked yet, but when she needs to, she rubs her fingers against its citrus leaves and finds some comfort in that.
Inspired by K.Austin’s answer to the question What’s your favourite garden smell? on July 29, 2010 at 8:01 am