scratch would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

A short discourse on the cultivation of bonsai

By scratch All Rights Reserved ©

Horror / Thriller

A short discourse on the cultivation of bonsai

Bonsai. A plant in a dish. But if only it were that simple. It’s an art form, a meditation. It is always a work in progress; always just a little change to maintain perfection, to maintain life.

I start with a suitable specimen. It has to be mounted, firmly, then it can be formed, sculpted, and teased towards its final shape. See, I have chosen a willow, young, lythe, pale, and supple. Unfortunately I had to pin the roots down, so they learn to follow the shape of the rock it is to grow over. This discomfort is necessary for the willow, but only until rock and root flow as one, as I demand.

And this is how you will learn, my little Willow, how I will form you into the most auspicious shape, a shape that flows sinuously from your feet, through your body, upwards and outwards along those slim, smooth arms.

To get the willow to curve sensuously I bind the trunk with heavy wire. This only stays in place until the form is set and my little tree no longer resists me. The boughs, too, are held in place with binding wire, until they, too, are happy to be where I place them. Look how your arms are poised, like a ballerina’s in the - I think - third position. So elegant. I think the wire will have to remain a little longer for you.

As my willow grows, so do the leaves. These must be kept in check. I don’t want large, gross leaves, so I always pay attention to pruning. Don’t worry little Willow, I will trim your nails often, oh, and your long, henna hair, too. That autumnal colour compliments your skin so well. You will always be preened and presentable.

No! Don’t speak! Look what you have done! Your head is sagging. Chin up, chin up! Wire. I need more wire. It’s no good. I need to make sure your head is held high, and your mouth, just so. Lips slightly apart. That’s it. There, I can give you water now, without too much dribbling.

Let me look at you. Both of you, my willow, and, my Willow. Almost a perfect pair. But what's the matter? I’ve made you beautiful. Your body is just so, head positioned thus, arms - well - perfect. Yet you cry and your face contorts in a grotesque fashion. No, obviously I haven’t finished yet. There is more to do.

Why are you so difficult? My willow bends and complies with my lightest caress, but you tense and become gnarled and sinewy before my fingertips even touch you. Surely you don’t hate me? Can you not see that it is only love I have for you? That is why you must be perfect. Like my willow.

I have a pine, and a maple, too. See, they are on the window sill, enjoying the sun. I have company for you as well, Willow. Here, I kept them behind the curtain as a surprise.

OK, they are dead now. But I learned a lot, so you mustn’t worry. Open your eyes, see how their lovely shape remains, even in death. Look at them. Look! Must I force your eyes in to the correct position, too? I have pins! If you can’t move your eyes, then I will do it for you!

There. That’s better. Now you are beautiful again.

A well trained and cultivated bonsai tree will, with the correct care, survive for many years. The young trees gradually take on the appearance of old, twisted examples seen growing naturally in the wild. The formal style, upright, stands proud; the literati has a more, shall we say, avant garde look. My personal favourite, the informal or moyogi style, gently curves in both trunk and branch - like you, my dear. Just to gaze and meditate on their form is reward for the time and attention I have paid to their training.

There are many trees suitable for bonsai. Pine is popular, so are maple, plum and acer. But for now my greatest pleasure is … with Willow.
Write a Review Did you enjoy my story? Please let me know what you think by leaving a review! Thanks, scratch
Continue Reading
Further Recommendations

William Elliott Kern: Andrew, I felt the terror of the hospital fire, the loss of lives, the hospital closed for some 30 plus years, and now, a girl is seen in the upper floors, which opens the religious aspect to your story, faith in what? overall i enjoyed the story, the progression and character development and th...

Kayresia A. Bass: Loved it. Author did some insane research to bring this story to life. A little short for my taste, but an awesome story nonetheless. A few missing periods, and a few missing ending quotation marks, but not enough to take away from the story.Keep going. Add more detail to your future stories and ...

Spring: I normally don't read fiction novels, but I absolutely enjoyed reading Silent Shadows! The style is quite different from the previous fiction novels I've attempted to read.Great job!

Capsi.rum : Story is unbelievable but i m bit off about end because there should be reunion of hamilton with all of his friends that's it

SeanSavage: Good plot that moves fairly quickly. Time passage somewhat vague. but not indecipherable. Very good syntax, grammar and punctuation. The story flowed very well, however, the breaks between chapters and the time jumps tended to be slightly confusing at first. I could see where the author was going...

DarkWolf .12: Very interesting plot! Had me up for the entire night. Keep up the good work 👍

Sanjana Prasad: The book has a thrilling plot with interesting characters. The female lead is a strong, independent woman with skeletons in her closet. The male lead is a deep man who has been wronged but always fights the world to keep going. The chemistry between the leads is amazing. I like how the author has...

More Recommendations

NRF: This was a very interesting story line, although the author did not go far enough in explaining the war and why some received special powers and some didn't. I really enjoyed this story and look forward to reading more of this author's writing.

Jason Phang: I'm pretty new to Inkitt (this is only my 4th book) and I must say I've been thoroughly impressed by the quality of the authors here. Remnants of Chaos is an excellently written book that hooks the reader, and doesn't let go. There are some grammatical and typographical errors, but nothing too se...

Barbara Zavela: Do you know the song, 'Imagine' by John Lennon?If you had a chance for a world like the one described in that song, would you grab it with both hands or turn away and reject it.This story pulls you in from the beginning with well-written scenarios. The author offers you the opportunity to bring y...

{{ contest.story_page_sticky_bar_text }} Be the first to recommend this story.

About Us:

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered book publisher, offering an online community for talented authors and book lovers. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books you love the most based on crowd wisdom.