Saturday, 23 May 2015

Blossoms in Spring

The Proud Little Apple Blossom

by Hans Christian Andersen (adapted)

It was the month of May, but the wind still blew cool, for the sun was not yet ready to shed his warmest rays on the waiting earth.

Yet some of the birds had come, and more were on their way, 

and many beautiful blossoms were already showing their pink and white blooms, 

 by Cecily Mary Baker

so that from bush and tree, field and flower, came the glad cry, "Spring is here! Spring is here." 

 by Cecily Mary Baker

Now, it happened that a young princess rode by a beautiful orchard in full bloom, and she stopped to pick a branch of apple blossoms to take to her palace. 

 by Cecily Mary Baker

All who saw the apple blossom praised its beauty and fragrance until the blossom became proud, and thought that beauty was the only valuable thing in the world. 

But as the apple blossom looked out upon the field she thought, "Not all of the plants are rich and beautiful, as I am, some seem poor and plain." 

And she noticed a little, common, yellow flower, which seemed to lift up its sunny head and grow everywhere.

The apple blossom said to the plain little flower, "What is your name?"

 by Cecily Mary Baker

"I am called the dandelion," replied the little flower.

 by Cecily Mary Baker

"Poor little plant," said the apple blossom. "It is not your fault; but how sad you must feel to be so plain and to bear such an ugly name."

Before the little plant could reply a lovely little sunbeam came dancing along and said, "I see no ugly flowers. 

 by Cecily Mary Baker

They are all beautiful alike to me." 

And he kissed the apple blossom; but he stooped low and lingered long to kiss the little yellow dandelion in the field.

The End.

Monday, 11 May 2015

Sakura Cherry Blossoms

Sakura Cherry Blossoms

After the long drawn out winter when finally the snow receded and all the pristine whitewash of nature was gone, the naked trees and the soggy ground was cloaked in various shades of gray and brown and dominated nature’s palette.

We did not mind the rain showers in April and, now in May, we wistfully wait for the green hues to manifest and avidly hunt for the emerging new shoots, all of which are representative of new life and new beginnings.

Taking long walks outside our eyes eagerly search for any sign of tiny buds on the tree brunches and bushes, while observing the delightful Robin feasting on insects crawling on the ground.

Then, before long, there is a buzz of excitement in the air and, armed with cameras, hats and refreshments we hasten to the parks to witness the first emerging blossoms. 

Our soul unfailingly soars in pure delight feasting at those brilliant blossoms, of which the Sakura Cherry trees enjoy the first honor.

Regardless of race or creed for that one instant we are one. All of us, young and old, are just delighted children of nature, enjoying nature’s bounty. 

Other blossoms will soon catch up… and we joyfully look forward to those bonny days ahead when the air gets filled with nature’s intoxicating perfume. 

My heart

That was rapt away

By the wild cherry blossoms—

Will it return to my body?

When they scatter?


Here’s some brief info about the Cherry Trees:

Somei-Yoshino Cherry Trees bloom early in High Park. They were given to Toronto by Japan in 1959. In 2001 (via Sakura Project) the Japanese Embassy donated an additional 34 Cherry trees to High Park. You may find a few more on the CNE grounds, at McMaster University, at York University and the University of Toronto.

The flowers are almost pure white, with a touch of pale pink close to the stem. These blooms lasts less than a week, falling off before the leaves appear. The variety that was developed in the mid to late 19th century (at the end of the Edo period and the beginning of the Meiji period) takes its name from the village of Somei (part of Toshima in Tokyo).

The Cherry blossoms usually symbolize clouds (because of their blooming in abundance and all at once). It is also a metaphor for the ephemeral nature of life (which is a Buddhist influence), an embodiment of the concept of “Mono no Aware” (literally “the pathos of things”). The transience of the blossoms, the great beauty and swift death has frequently been linked with mortality.

Here are some more pictures depicting the fun on May 6 and 8, 2015 at High Park:

Have a wonderful day.