Thursday, April 14, 2011
I steal flowers, figs, and berries...
I see that I've lost a follower. That's fine, perhaps even good. Inspiration to write and less pressure. Not that anyone pressures me to write. Not that I don't love that anyone follows me. I'm amazed anyone does actually. I'm so spotty and dissatisfying.
I feel blindsided by this spring. By work. By love. Is it love that keeps me away from the keyboard? Is it love that is making this spring so crazy beautiful? I don't know. I don't want to stop writing, and I haven't actually. I just can't seem to finish anything.
This spring: first it was the Japanese Magnolias. I blame it on them. There were not blossoms and then there were, an explosion of blossoms, a proud of blossoms, a murder of them, and fat they were and dripping from trees. The smell was overwhelming and high inducing, and at one point I stood between two on a carpet of spent petals with the blue sky overhead and the buzzing of bees as loud as lawn mowers and I thought "Does it get better than this?".
But yes it does.
Then came the dogwoods. Snow. Snow with leaves, and tiny green centers, and gray zig-zag branches that alone would be enough. Then came the azaleas, regular and miniature, in all the bridesmaid colors. And then came the cherries and the pears (blossoms, not fruit), and tung, all fast and furious and garish and wonderful.
Add to that the birds that pass through these parts in such numbers that you wonder what it looks like in the place they eventually perch. Finches, wrens, blue jays, cardinals, geese, woodpeckers, yes. Those are the ones I can name. Bluebirds- I saw them at my boyfriend's mother's house. I said I'd never seen one, and there one was. There was one day while walking to work when I saw such a flock of birds, so many I had to stand and look and was late for all my standing but I did not care. I was on a canopy road and they filled the trees, all those great big Spanish moss dripping trees, they filled them and then lifted off, and then filled them and lifted off. Again and again, and when they took to the air they did so in a great scrawing formation. They made a blow fish in the air, and then a dragon, and then a bearcat, and then settled on down only to do it again. I could have stayed and watched for hours. I felt like calling in well, as Tom Robbins would say. "I'm sorry, I can't come into work. The birds. Yes. They are too beautiful." Some days it feels like a sin against God to go into work.
But that was months ago. Maybe two. It's all different now. Flower sex has caught, and everything is fecund. The first fruits are swelling, the mulberries are already ripe. Not quite fall-on-the-ground-and-stain-your-feet ripe, but ripe enough to pluck on the way to work and arrive red handed and berry mouthed. The fig trees smell like figs. The loquats and kumquats are heavy. We have a lemon tree at the restaurant that I've been promised is a rare variety that is so sweet you can eat the fruit off the branch. I miss the blossoms (they smelled like heaven) but I love the tiny green marbles that get bigger every day. I love that the pear trees have lost their petals because I cant wait to roast the pears in brown sugar and butter. Vanilla. Lemon zest. Ginger. When the world smells like honey how can you help but be hungry? I swear I gain 10 pounds every spring.
The roses are almost done, but the jasmine is blooming. Entire walls of it that proves that nature is the queen boss of us all because we know it will pull our fences down and yet we plant it there and let it go wild. Soon it will be so florid with tiny white pinwheels that the scent, when walking by, will make me feel so light headed and high that it will honestly make my knees go weak. I will want to sink to the ground. I will want to lie on the sidewalk. I will want to look at the sky spinning above my head. It is not the sky! It is the jasmine and the bees! I shall have to tell myself this firmly. I shall have to walk on. It does not do to lie on the sidewalk. Spring fever or no.
I can not remember a spring so beautiful. I forgot to mention the wisteria. And the honeysuckle. And the camellias. There are camellias that look like ripped open organs, tattered and fat and blood red. There are also those that look like roses or virginal fairy dresses. One for every lady. Maybe this is why we love them.
So love. Maybe it is love making everything smell so sweet. Or maybe it is love allowing me to be open to the spring, to the flesh of it and the beauty of it and the smell of it and the great great opening of it all. Just like a lonely girl eschews sex scenes in movies so does one turn a blind eye to spring. Non fate guerra al maggio, my friend. War not with May. And May is coming. So soon. In a couple of weeks. For the first time in a long time, I am looking forward to May, and accepting her as she may come.