Virginia Woolf's short story called "Kew Gardens " is set in the iconic botanical gardens of the same name. Woolf may have chosen the gardens because they are so much a part of the past, present, and the future (she would have hoped). This makes them a perfect...
Virginia Woolf's short story called "Kew Gardens" is set in the iconic botanical gardens of the same name. Woolf may have chosen the gardens because they are so much a part of the past, present, and the future (she would have hoped). This makes them a perfect setting for a story that reveals for all humanity's differences, some things remain the same. In its simplest form, the story reveals the different types of love and love's various stages. The gardens are the perfect setting for people of all ages and all sectors of society. They do not judge, and their beauty is not dependent on the outcome of any relationship, social standing, age, or intention.
The gardens are reassuring for the young parents who otherwise must think of their children. The gardens allow the husband and wife a brief break from parenthood to ponder on events from many years ago. For the husband it is a wistful, if fortuitous, memory of a past love, and for his wife, a reminder of love of a different kind between a child and her mentor.
There is love and respect by the young man for the distracted, eccentric, and forgetful old man. The young man knows him well, and he is likely his son or grandson. He allows the old man to continue his nonsensical discussions and only interferes when it is necessary.
The two elderly busybodies, apparently best friends, pause in the garden, such is its effect. Best friends often share a deep understanding of one another which needs no explanation.
As the young couple passes through, there is a sense of innocence and of love yet unexplored. The couple is excited by the prospect of the adult pursuit of "tea with other people."
Perhaps Woolf wrote this short story to show that despite the different conversations and different life stages of the people who passed through, everything blurs in the natural beauty of the surroundings. In reality, Woolf's views were quite outspoken, but within this story individual differences are not relevant. In the gardens, everyone can enjoy a restful, peaceful existence away from life’s pressures.