Of Spring and Lilacs

When the scent of Lilacs fills the air each Spring, it is but one of many seasonal gifts of Nature which serve to uplift the spirit after a long, cold Winter. This heavenly aroma is among the very first of the overwhelming olfactory sensations (just after Hyacinths) that permeate the air here in the Northeast. Sadly, this narcotic fades fairly quickly.

Lilacs welcome a new day.

Lilacs welcome a new day.

This morning, I ventured out just after sunrise with scissors and bowl in hand to harvest some of the delicate flowers while at their peak with the intention of preserving their precious essence to enjoy later in the year. This activity itself was a sublime meditation. The early hour meant only the sound of the natural world was around me – no lawn mowers, chain saws or road noise could be heard. Instead, life as it was intended predominated with the buzz of Carpenter Bees near the woodpile, a Baltimore Oriole singing for his apple jelly treat, the American Robin pair first scolding and then standing guard near their nest of 4 eggs in the nearby Rhododendron and the sound of an oh so gentle breeze through the needles of the White Pine. This wonderful scene intermingled with wafting perfume and sunbeams  making for a resplendent moment in time.

So now when I later enjoy the jelly, infusions and waters that these lovely Lilacs have afforded me, the memory of the magical interlude that made this morning’s brief outing so special will remain for months and perhaps years. Mitakuye Oyasin, indeed.

Lilac blossoms ready for preserving.

Lilac blossoms ready for preserving in jellies and floral waters.

Lilac blossoms will impart their aroma to sugar, which will be lovely in teas.

Lilac blossoms will impart their aroma to sugar, which will be lovely in teas.

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