June 03, 2014

Legend

June 3, 2014 Photo (154/365): "Bleeding Hearts"
(aka: Dutchman's breeches, lyre flowers, lady-in-a-bath)

A legend from Japan tells the story of how bleeding hearts came to be: A young man tried to win the love of a young lady by giving her a pair of rabbits (the first two petals of the flower), a pair of slippers (the next two petals), and finally a pair of earrings (the last two petals). Sadly, despite his valiant efforts, the lady rejected the young man's affections. Alas, the heart-broken suitor pierced his heart with his own sword (the middle part of the flower). His blood shed caused the bleeding hearts to grow.

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When, I was a little girl, the lady next door grew pink bleeding hearts in her garden and I thought they were so pretty. I had forgotten about these old-fashioned flowers and have never seen this white "Alba" variety until they sprang up my inlaws' new yard.