Traveling south this time of year, into a spring far advanced past its current muddy incarnation in New Hampshire, is a treat. David and I were in Knoxville, TN this weekend, to be the support team for Sam and his friend Mike as ran they ran their first marathon. Besides the pleasure of being with two smart, strong and very funny young men as they pushed their bodies pretty much to the breaking point, there was the delight of sunny days with temperatures in the 70s, and lines of dogwood trees showing off their white blossoms against blue skies. I’m ready for more of that, right here at home.
As we crossed a street on Saturday evening, littered with fallen petals, I thought of this poem, from years ago, realizing I will probably never stop noticing how trees shape-shift through the seasons.
What is the weight of a flower, the weight
of a tree bearing such blatant intent?
Every mass of blossoms, snow cloud,
exclamation, exuberance of fruit
to come, has a future, a history,
a moment of abandon, petals
splayed wide, drawing pollen to the core.
The wilt and decay towards apple
is hidden in new leaves, riches spent,
riches returned, petals salting the grass.