There’s something so comforting in the scent of lilacs – a subtle assurance that winter has passed and the world is coming back to life. This time of year I love their scent drifting into the bedroom on a morning breeze, teaming up with the neighborhood chickadee to gently nudge us awake. I’m certain if they could make such an alarm clock I’d be able to face the mornings more cheerfully all year ’round.
It seems appropriate to me that in the Victorian language of flowers white lilacs represent memories. Lilacs remind me so much of my grandmother. In the spring we would go out together and cut them from the bush in the back yard for a fresh arrangement. One small bouquet scented most of the house, and as a result the warm, comfortable scent is inextricably linked for me to crocheted lace and quilts and homemade bread with jam.
I’ve tried to preserve the blossoms to keep them around just a bit longer, but the truth is that it’s never quite the same. And as I grow older I think I approve. I have begun to realize that if I could keep the precious flowers around all year they would lose a bit of their magic. I don’t believe that I’d care to give up the thrill of stepping around a melting bit of snow, or across an icy puddle, to breathe deeply the heady perfume of a long-awaited Spring.