Sunday, April 22, 2012

Spring Fragrance

“Can words describe the fragrance of the very breath of spring?” ― Neltje Blanchan

It is impossible to stay indoors during the springtime, unless one is an invalid, and even then, windows can be opened to let in the fresh air. I remember when I was a teenager, to sit in a classroom was an arduous task in spring. The air, laden with blossom scents, the balmy temperatures, and all the earth heaving a sigh of relief and joy—it made me want to jump out of my seat and escape the indoors.
This has not changed in the decades of my life. Even as sap stirs within the plants, and the life force within tiny seeds forces green shoots to break their shells and grow toward the sun, so too, a lively energy is awakened within me.

Sometimes, I just walk around the old neighborhood in the vicinity of my art gallery, and notice the changing surroundings. Today, as I bent over to smell lilac blossoms, I thought how fleeting the pleasure. The scent of lilacs is at the top of my list of olfactory experiences, along with jasmine, honeysuckle, rose, salt-water breezes, oranges, and a few others. The experience of smelling lilacs is something like watching a spectacular sunset—it puts one in awe, and also, it summons a slight feeling of regret of life’s impermanence.

“When spring came, even the false spring, there were no problems except where to be happiest. The only thing that could spoil a day was people and if you could keep from making engagements, each day had no limits. People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself.”
― Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast

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