lessons learned: the crocus in winter

…. there may not be enough marigolds all summer to equal the first spring crocus

~ Nancy R. Hugo

Last week, I traveled to Wisconsin for a business trip.  While I love having a break away from the normal routine, this time, I was particularly excited about the possibility of seeing snow.  You see, I live in my hometown, but climate change has impacted our winters as such that snow weeks have turned into snow days, and snow days have petered out into snow flurries that tease us long enough to close school but never accumulate into much.

When I returned home, I took a long stroll around the gardens.  Uneaten broccoli rapini had blossomed into brilliant yellow paintbrushes.  The Russian kale had aged from brilliant green to deep purple.  Then across the way, I spotted it.  The first crocus.crocus 2 yellow

Even in the midst of a mild winter, there’s something to be said for the first crocus.  She peeks unassumingly through dead leaves to greet the winter with a fond “hello.”  Rather than hibernating as most of us of her peers do, she invites herself to Winter’s party and celebrates with her brightest dress.

As I photographed the crocus, I realized something.  Many of us dread the coming of winter as it brings with it cold and darkness and depression.  Some days, we long for the light and life of Spring and mark the time by the lengthening of days.

Yet, the crocus wouldn’t bloom without winter.  And would we appreciate her so greatly if her blossoms graced the Earth in the midst of another season?

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