Ellsworth Kelly’s Magnolia

Ellsworth Kelly Magnolia

Every year, within a day or two of Father’s Day, the first magnolias appear on the tree we planted in my father’s memory. Often, three flowers appear at once. My two sisters and I take this as a sign our dad is present.

This Father’s Day morning, I was not in my mother’s front yard awaiting the annual blooms, but at the Met, strolling through the fabulousĀ Ellsworth Kelly Plant Drawings exhibit. Without thinking about the occasion, I came upon this sketch of a magnolia, admired it, then read the wall text and noticed it was drawn the year I was born.

Of course it was. Happy Father’s Day.

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