Even when things go a bit darker and are curtailed, Spring comes right along!
Below you’ll find a sumptuous little bit from a letter Ruskin sent to his very dear friend, Susie Beever (Susie lived in Coniston just three miles or so from Brantwood), on a spring day in 1879, about a year after experiencing his first attack of “brain fever.” Its few lines tell us that his good spirit, despite a recent and severe setback, has not only survived, but is, like the flowers he describes, eagerly reaching out again.
The Crocuses [at Brantwood] are all out! Like so many little…
No! they’re like nothing but themselves!
“Dewdrops in the red bit of the rainbow,” I was going to say.
But they’re so twisted up with their stalks and so unspeakably wild and pretty that everything’s commonplace to them!
These words were written a hundred and forty-one years ago, and although I am not sending this post out to you from Brantwood, I can assure you that, on this lovely spring day in Upstate New York, despite whatever has happened in the interim between the moment when Ruskin told of his joy in his spring’s crocuses, despite whatever is going on in our lives now, they are gladly doing their job still: celebrating the spirit of their life, insistently pushing up through the remnants of last year’s decomposing leaves. (“What care we for them?” they say, “They have done their job and it was beautiful. But now it is time for us to do ours!”) As we know, the days of croci (?) in the sun have been determined by nature to be few, but, few or not, they remain beyond marvelous, do they not? Everything’s commonplace to them!
Until next time!
Be well out there!
P.S.: Long-time followers of this site will recall that, some years back, I put up another picture of our yard’s lovely spring crocuses. See 118: “The Effeminate Sentimentality of Ruskin”. As you can see, they are as beautiful now as they were then, and the interim just goes to prove the point of both posts! 🙂