“If I had but two loaves of bread I would sell one of these and buy white Hyacinths to feed my soul.”  (Elbert Hubbarb 1856-1915)




How did it manage to stay alive,

how did it struggle through the dark, damp light of day?

How did it live through the bitter season of the freezing snow?

How did it form the first green tip and how did it grow?

Nobody knows, but here it comes with petals to make its silent witness of spring.

as blue as the blue of a summer day

a deep and lovely shade.

The marvelous work of a perfect artist

Wonderfully made

But as I look on the perfection of the sky blue bloom I am haunted by this question, how in its frozen tomb did the bulb in cruel weather manage to survive.

How did it live in the long cold winter? How did it keep alive?

So many years ago that the lettering is starting to fade my Father sent me this poem.  When we lived in that other place, where winter was cruel and cold,  I would pot up hyacinth bulbs  and put the pots in the garden.  My Dad would dig them out of the frozen ground and I would bring them into the house to bloom.

I have hyacinths blooming around  my front door.  Their heady fragrance  perfumes the air.  Their colour necklaces the river stone.  Their magic weaves a spell and beckons all to enter.

This is a re-post of a blog I wrote in March, 2010.  My blogging friend Cecilia,  of  Thekitchensgarden.com  commented on my post this morning about lilies.   It reminded me of this poem my Father sent to me.



  1. I think I smell them all the way here.. over the snow cap mountains,the vast valleys of trickling streams and yet still frozen prairies. Spring is in the air..

  2. Thanks for sharing that special memory. I envy your close relationship you had with your father. You must have had a lovely childhood since you turned into such a lovely person. So glad to call you friend! Ginny

    • I am fortunate to have discovered Ginny and of course cat Polly. Both of our parents did their up most to make our childhood as happy as possible. We grew up just after the depression so money was scarce. It didn’t matter because there was always picnics and skating parties, and camping. Those were simpler times, and they were the best of times. Virginia

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