Really, the sign says it all: “Cemetery Plots Cared for * Fruit Baskets * Balloons * Plants for all Occasions.” Sure, McGovern Florist has the usual botanical paraphernalia—out front, trays of daisies and impatiens await implantation, and bags of soil huddle; inside, a cooler chills buckets of roses, lilies, and tulips—but alongside this flora, more macabre items nestle. There are pink, purple, and red plastic flowers fashioned into circles or crosses, grave markers that declare, “Happy Birthday,” and an array of cards that celebrate “My Dad in Heaven,” “My Mom in Heaven,” “My Beloved Child in Heaven,” and “A Message From Heart to Heaven.” Located across the street from Green-Wood Cemetery, this Victorian greenhouse—a distinctive, if somewhat dilapidated, structure boasting a glass dome and a jaunty cupola—has sold bouquets for more than 100 years. The current owners have thrived there for nearly 40, dispensing prom corsages and funeral wreaths alike. Apparently, when you say it with flowers, even the dead listen.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 21, 2009