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Ramblings by Rose Mary

Please refer to the Ramblings by Rose Mary main page for columns published in other issues.
Rose Mary can be contacted via e-mail at rwclarke@mibor.net.

 

 

 

 Bloodroot's Blooms Remind Writer of Her Roots

 

"When the red, red robin comes bob, bob, bobbin along, along

There'll be no more sobbin' when he starts throbbin' his old, sweet song. …"

 

Spring Diary -- Monday: My grandson's generation wouldn't appreciate this song that Al Jolson popularized or another favorite Jolson song, "April Showers." Really! Songs about the weather?

I’m taking a break from education. One can’t think about such serious stuff when Spring – glorious, magical, capricious Spring!-- is visiting – at least for a few giddy, fleeting days. I must take the time to savor her essence because she may be gone tomorrow.

As I watched the unfolding of the dawn, I fancied that I saw Lady Spring dancing across the lawn that was being crisscrossed by robins with their distinctive, bobbing hop. She’d discarded the white ermine robe in which she’d slept through the winter, and her gauzy green nightgown floated behind her on the gentle breeze. Whatever she touched awakened from its winter's sleep.

Tuesday: In the space of one day, between dawn and dusk, the sun’s light warmed plants. Flowers open, and buds unfurl. The leaf of the most southerly fat bud on the magnolia tree was split yesterday morning, and its white blossom was trying to burst out. By evening it had escaped as had another bloom at the top of the tree. Some of the trees and bushes have leaves of that freshest, most tender green that matches Lady Spring's gown.

Naughty grape hyacinths are trying to escape from the flower bed and have marched into the rock path that Bill works so hard to keep free of weeds. Crocuses are blooming, and golden daffodils on the south side of our house where the brick walls absorb and reflect the warmth of the sun bloomed a week ago. I broke off a small stalk of one of the larger hyacinths to take to a friend, and its scent filled my car.

The changing of the light has worked in tandem with the rain. The mallard ducks have returned to the drainage ditch by my office, and a pair was wading in a marshy place in the lawn of the retirement center where my friend lives.

Spring is a time of hope and poignant memories. As soon as I realized that the season was upon us, I started keeping a sharp eye on the flower bed in front of the greenhouse window. Aha! I spied the white flowers of ten tiny bloodroots.

Sixty years ago, Mother dug up a bloodroot that she found in a woods and planted it in her wildflower garden. She could grow anything, and the bloodroot grew to a giant of its kind. Several years later, after marrying my stepfather, she moved it to their New Castle home. Finally, after deciding that Bill was an adequate gardener, she brought it to our Indianapolis home where it flourished underneath a persimmon tree.

Years later, we sold our home, and I got permission to take the bloodroot. However, when the time to close on the house came, it had died down; and I couldn’t find it. After the papers were all signed, I burst into tears and wailed, “Oh, I couldn’t find my mother’s bloodroot. The new owner said, “Don’t worry. Next spring you can get a start.”

Looking back, I realize that the bloodroot was more than a plant: It was an incarnation of my mother. For several years I’d forget about it until its season had past. Then, one day, I impulsively stopped at the old house and was given a start. The little plants are miniscule, compared with their parent. Not to worry. The connection with my mother lives.

Wednesday: A gray day. Lady Spring is pouting.

Thursday: The fruit trees that Bill planted out back are in full bloom.

Saturday: Spring is doing her laundry; it’s pouring! I’ve just had one of the biggest frights of my life. A friend and I were having coffee at the Lazy Daze coffee house in Irvington. She said, “Let’s sit outside under the canopy. It’ll feel like Paris!” We took a table against the building where we wouldn’t get wet.

We were chatting away when there was a blinding flash of light and a loud BANG. The scene all around us lit up so that I felt as if I were in the middle of a fireball. Both of us screamed. The people inside the café came running out. I wondered if there’d been an explosion in the second floor of the building.

Lightning had struck a tree about 20 feet from where we sat. “We’re lucky we weren’t fried!,” I exclaimed. We went on drinking our café latte, figuring that lightning never strikes twice in the same place! Duh! It is not smart to sit outside during a storm!

Sunday: A perfect spring day!

 

 

 

 

 

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