The Flower Series is an ongoing body of work paying tribute to the certain late I have felt connection to.
For David is a memorial for my friend and coworker David Perrin who never made it to work on the morning of February 22nd, 2017. David was Vancouver’s first motor vehicle casualty of 2017, a fact which holds little relevance in the grand schemes of life and death, pain and loss. After his passing, I was blessed to hold the hands of his parents as they came to visit the warehouse where he had worked. In looking into their eyes, I saw him. And I saw, too, the unfathomable pain of parents who had lost their son. I like to pay homage to David in leaving flowers there on a certain streetlamp on a that certain busy corner. The flowers do not last long before wilting, yet, I find certain beauty in the dried flowers as I sometimes bring them home, or as I sometimes pass by them on my motorbike at that certain intersection. I wish only for people to pause and remember that life is fleeting- it is so very short, and yet, it has the potential to be so, very, epically beautiful, should we chose it to be.
For Henry is homage to Henry Hoggan, whose cross rests in the sagebrush of an arid valley off Highway 97. It is soothing to be there, among the faded offerings, boding reminder of a life lived and lost. There you will find a rock marking the spot, and the wind which runs through those mountains is truly something.
Lastly, For Shannon is homage to Shannon Archer. Shannon was killed heading north on the Sea-to-Sky in 2005, which at that time was still labeled the “killer highway,” amounting to hundreds of accidents annually and at least twice as often as provincial average. It was Doodson’s blind corner that took Shannon twelve years ago. Since then the highway has been upgraded 600 million dollars, but the white cross overlooking Howe Sound remains largely unchanged, save for the flowers replaced frequently. She overlooks the water, the mountains, and the sky. The sunsets are truly breathtaking. I stop on my motorbike every time I ride his highway, slowing down to find the path tucked behind the large rock that leads to her bench. I am reminded of my own truck accident, how it felt to open my eyes only to hear the loud tapping of hail on the bottom of the flipped truck. And my breath. The sound was life itself, life being the epitome of delicate. I apologize to sound tacky and cliche, but I will say it anyway: To feel alive is the greatest gift of all. Bask in it.