I have always associated peonies with spring. It was one of my mother's favourite flowers. Therefore, peonies have way too many Proustian connections to fathom.
They are an heroic memento mori for me. They burst forth with far too much glory and have heads that they can barely hold up.
And when it rains, as it inevitably does, they fall gloriously to the ground, overburdened, sparkling with wet and full of life as they fade to the end.