It’s continuing to rain here, so I’m foregoing my outdoor walk yet again. I could go to walk the indoor track, but I think I’m going to pass on that. Once Ive been out walking in nature, and no matter how wonderful the facility is, the indoor track isn’t very appealing. Maybe I’m just having some lazy days and using excuses. It’s starting to sound like that, isn’t it?

Going through recent photos this morning, I came across this close-up of an Oriental Poppy. I grew these many years ago and just loved the giant blooms.

Despite the fact that I grew these for several years, I never once took a close look at them. I enjoyed flower photography back then too, and had a beautifully bordered yard to practice in. I shot many close-ups of my flowers, but never one of the poppies. Maybe it’s because the flowers are so big to begin with, that they don’t seem to lend themselves to close-up photos.

The poppy in my feature photo was in a yard I pass on one of my in-city walking trails. The massive bloom caught my attention and brought back memories of my own poppies. I stopped to take a photo, and, for some reason, decided on a close-up.

When I looked at the photo later, I was surprised by a couple of things I had never noticed before.

The first thing I saw was the purple-black cross shape against the red crepe-paper petals. This reminded me of the poem, “In Flanders Fields”, because the first line references the crosses that mark the graves of fallen soldiers. I searched Google images and saw that many varieties of poppies in Belgium (the location of Flanders Field) do have this cross-like design in them.

The other thing I noticed in the close-up is how the texture of the centre of the flower looks like yarn. Do you see that too?

Even the slightest breeze makes these huge, yet delicate blossoms flutter, so my central focus point had a bit of blur. I corrected this as best I could using the details tool in Snapseed.

“The unexpected discoveries along the route are the joys of heading to the final destination.”

Steven Magee