“Hope springs eternal…”
I’m noticing a few things as I sit down to write this… I notice that I haven’t posted to this blog in a while, as I’ve been busy mining the technical depths of creating our new and improved online marketplace. I also notice that the last time I posted I was inspired to write by a quote from Albert Camus, “Autumn is a second spring, where every leaf is a flower.”
Today, I’m inspired by spring, and by Alexander Pope, “Hope springs eternal in the human breast…”
Pope it seems, was more concerned with man’s relationship to God, and though it may not be too big a stretch to see a similar relationship between man and nature, that line, “Hope springs eternal,” is a poem enough in itself for me this time of year, as spring begins to peak from beneath the last of the trickling snowmelt and hint at the incredible unfolding that is about to occur.
Spring is to a farmer like…
The comparison doesn’t immediately present itself, in part because it’s hard for a farmer like myself to imagine where else anyone can find that incredible wellspring of hopefulness and gratitude that comes on those first warm breezes of spring; those first days where it’s light out for more than thirteen hours, when the spongy ground reveals itself as the snow melts before your eyes, and the birds... the burgeoning chorus of thrushes and kinglets, swallows and warblers fill the morning. Even while the trees still stand leafless in the morning sun, it’s hard to see where all those little songs are coming from.
Every spring, farmers everywhere, but especially in New England, forget about how harried they’ll be in August, or how exhausted they’ll be come October, and think only of the astonishing world that is about to reveal itself at the tips of their fingers, the tines of their broad forks, the tops of the trees, and in the tilth beneath their feet.
Snowdrops and Salamanders
Everything awakens in spring with a stark and subtle beauty in brilliant juxtaposition to the monochromatic mise en scène winter’s left behind. The snow drops, trout lillies, and trillium tease their way out of the matted forest floor, while spotted salamanders, wood frogs, and peepers traverse miles of treacherous terrain to meet and mate.
On the farm, the giant pussy willow have come and gone with those first revelatory warm days of April, and the tulips are bursting at the seams. Tight little buds on the peony clusters, and lilac beckon a spring and summer we tend to think may never come, but does.
The hopefulness interred in each tender bud is the selfsame sanguine complexion that warms the farmer’s heart. It’s hard not to wile hours away just walking the fields, seeing a greenish flush creep its way up the mountains in the distance, as the flowers at the edge of the path blush their lemony sheen.
I get lost there often, and I find that it’s there that I am most grateful, most hopeful, most inspired. It’s a blessing that lies beneath the heavy snow every winter and yet still surprises us with the first signs of spring.
Hope, most certainly, springs eternal.
About the Author: Walt Krukowski started Mountain Flower Farm in 1998, and has been growing peonies on a hillside farm in Warren, VT ever since. Mountain Flower Farm specializes in shipping seasonal cut flowers and woody branches to discerning floral designers nationwide. The farm also produces peony root divisions and provides them at wholesale prices to growers throughout the USA. You can visit online:www.mountainflowerfarm.com