Ssshhhh. There it is. Do you see it? Be careful, don't spook it! Yes, I'm referring to that pinkie-sized little burgundy-red bullet poking up from the cold, unforgiving ground. Poor, brave little thing, the first sign of Spring 2016 has appeared in my garden.
I have almost forgotten the feel of warm wind on my face, the warmth of sunlight on my now dry and chapped skin. It seems like an eternity since the last lightning graced the sky, since the Earth welcomed hot liquid rain to quench thirst and still dust. You may have noticed my absence from this blog over the past 6 weeks. My garden and I are strangers now, dreaming to be reacquainted like lost lovers torn apart by war, a civil war begun anew between North and South; only except this North and South are points of the compass and prevailing weather systems rather than quarreling political divisions.
It's been a dry winter, the last rains ended before the ground froze. Afterwards only frequent frost and hoar to coat the ground and dormant grass. We've had one snow, a few days of six-inch deep stillness, melted everywhere now except for the deepest north-faced exposures. I've been lazy this winter, involved in work and in pursuit of hibernation, neglecting the colorful catalogs, unable to rekindle desire even from the most voluptuous and bountiful images of new roses. The ennui of winter reigns my soul, sapping interest and energy.
But there, in the cold, Paeonia 'Sorbet' rises, slow and stiff and silent. Somewhere, within the gardener's chest, a slow beat begins. Lub...........Dub.............Lub...Dub...LubDub, LUBDUB. Echos of the life without begin again within, a quickening ember fanned to low flame. It will be weeks, yet, before the fire burns high, but at least I know now that it lives, that wish and thought and action will soon join again to dig and plant and nurture.