Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Mighty Crocus

I never was one for growing bulb flowers. They seemed such work to me for what you got. You had to go out in the cold for hours to put them in the hard ground in November and then you had to wait. And wait forever. The following spring they would show up for maybe two weeks of color. Maybe two weeks they would be there if you were lucky and they had had enough to feed themselves from the soil. So I got my tulips and other bulb flowers from the florist, thinking that’s what all sane people do.

Then I moved into a house with a forgotten garden. The garden had once been beautifully landscaped that was now overgrown. I hardly had time to figure out what was there, for all the time I spent pulling weeds and taking things out of the way.

The house was in the woods and just down the lane from Red Riding Hood’s House in Eastern Massachusetts. They’d taken care of the wolf the previous year, so the garden and the leaves from some 200 trees were my biggest problems. We never saw the little girl in the red cloak.
Oh, there was one other problem. The snow. The snow.

When it snowed, it mean the snow plow on the driveway, every four inches. That meant every four hours, which was four times in one day. It snowed four or five times a winter. The snow was wet and white and heavy. The air was clear and cold. The winter was long and filled with snow.
After months of that kind of winter, the need for spring is something close to starving. Just one blade of grass would be a gift that I’d carry in to place carefully in a vase to share. If I saw one . . . but I didn’t for what seemed like years.

One morning backing out of the garage, I glimpsed a bit color, something purple to my left. A bird I thought it must be. I looked again. It didn’t move. I stopped the car and I walked over. It was a flower. A crocus standing in the patch of white.

I couldn’t believe the feeling. Elation. Excitement. Joy. Hope?

The Mighty Crocus had vanquished the gloom of snow. A little bulb flower had made my day.
Spring was coming. I was sure.
—me strauss Letting me be

6 comments:

Marti said...

Ah yes, I have crocus (plural = croci?)as well. And a huge Forsythia bush, which blooms with vivid yellow blossoms bursting like stars in the air above the multiple purple flowers I am unsure how to pluralize LOL

Lovely post - thanks for sharing!

ME Strauss said...

Thanks Marti,
Good to see you. It's been a morning fighting with my blog. I can't wait for spring. How about you?
Liz

Trée said...

The folks who lived in our house before us had planted tulip bulbs all around in the front yard. Twelve years later they still make their yearly appearence like clockwork. And I still marvel at their suvival and beauty. As always, wonderful post Liz. :-)

ME Strauss said...

Thanks Tree,
It's wonderful to see you in all of your glory. I hope you're doing well. I think of you often.
Liz

sandra said...

I've lived in San Francisco for a few years now and have to say that although not one ounce of me misses winter (I like going to the snow -- I don't like when it comes to me), I do miss Spring and all that comes with it. Crocuses included!

ME Strauss said...

Hi Sandra,
My feelings exactly! The seven years I lived without winter, I didn't miss it either. In fact, I enjoyed the extra time I had. Ah but, spring is magical, like Camelot. . .
Liz