Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Snowdrops are a type of flower, with white petals surrounding a small green heart shape in their center, and they are most often one of the first to flowers to bloom at the end of winter. As such, they will often be seen poking out of stubborn snow, grappling towards the sun & end of winter days.

I was obsessed with watching for them every year when I was young, braving our extensive back yard and Canadian snow drifts in search of their tiny forms. I even got lost in the forest reserve near our house several times scrambling under dense pine trees, sure that if I looked hard enough they would have to reveal their hiding spot. Eventually, with an inane persistence only a young child could muster, I would ultimately find one. At which point I would run to tell whoever was near that the fairy's had returned, and spring would be coming soon. As with many childhood imaginings I can't really explain now, I believed snowdrops were magical flowers, somehow connected to fairy's, and I wished more than anything that these winged beings existed. Because of this intense belief, I refused to ever pick any of the snowdrops, worrying it would somehow harm the small ethereal creatures. So I would simply spend a handful of minutes as often as I could sitting near them enjoying their soft fragrance I can no longer remember and really truly hope to enjoy again.

One year, heading out just at the time when snowdrifts on the edge of the road turned to grey slush from warming temperatures, I came upon a site more exciting and joyful than my birthday, Halloween and Hanukkah combined. Along the house and all around the doorstep and path bloomed sweet little snowdrops, gently bent and gracefully swaying in their usual unimposing manner. My mother, soon appearing behind me, announced the fairy's must have given me a gift for announcing thier message of impending spring every year, now I will always have fairy's in my garden. I'm pretty sure I must have felt like the luckiest girl in the whole world right then.

Looking back now, equipped with unwanted knowledge, I know that snow drops flower from bulbs and my mother must have either bought or dug up many tiny bulbs, and meticulously planted them where they could not be missed. I did however question her about this a year or so ago, she denies any involvement, the fairy's did it she says.

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