Wednesday, June 02, 2021
I remember AE Housman' s poem -- he was born in 1859, so written presumably about 1879-- from when I was quite a small girl, long before I was 20! And now I've had my 70 springs, but this one for the first time enjoying cherry blossom right outside my bedroom window:
Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.
Now, of my threescore years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy springs a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.
And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.
Cherry trees did NOT bloom in Ontario at Easter time . . . much later. And later still here on Prince Edward Island.
But one of the things I noticed in February, when our new garden was still full of snow, was a small grove of what I was pretty sure had to be cherry trees. Half a dozen wild cherries, each about 50-60 feet tall, with characteristic horizontal slubbing on their gleaming dark "wild silk" bark. They began blooming about mid-May, fragrant and filled with the humming of bees all day long. Only now are the petals falling and fluttering to the green grass like huge snow flakes. The tiny sour dark cherries aren't really edible for humans but will fuel up migrating birds in the fall for their long flights south.
And yes: although I don't have 50 left, I am still hoping to enjoy these wild cherries for many more Island springs!