I wrote this February 16, 2004. This post is for me. Again, the crocus rises.
I tend to mark the seasons by plants. Some connections are obvious, strawberries and honeysuckle in June, apples and pumpkins in October. After the hard freeze in November, time seems to stop. By January, even kale has given up the ghost. By then, I no longer notice.
Deep winter, rhythms cease. Some of us lose our way. Age teaches me little but patience; sometimes that is enough.
Now in mid-February the ground remains frozen, and will be for another month. In a week or so, however, impossibly green slivers of grass-like leaves will break through the ice, marked with silver stripes down their middle. And in two weeks, egg-shaped cups of purple and yellow and white will flare open with the sun, exposing bright yellow stamens, the first smell of sex since the world died.
Crocuses flower from February to April--the earliest flowers defy logic, brilliant bursts of color calling bees still slumbering in hives.
By this time of year, I have just about given up on prayer. Nothing seems possible. This early bright drop of color reminds me just how little I know.
And here they are, back again.