Every Monday Cathy from Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase assembled from materials collected in our gardens.
Last week I mentioned the first daffodils had begun opening in my garden and many more have opened since. I have been seeing them around town three or four weeks earlier. And on Friday I spotted a clump near the roadside that ignited my imagination. How many years I wondered have they survived encroachment from highway and utility crews, their appearance marking a place where once the land supported a family and a way of life.
Seeing the roadside patch of daffodils reminded to search back for an old post. Hope you won’t mind that I decided to share with you again.
But first, today’s vase: a handful of Narcissus ‘King Alfred’ and a few N. ‘Tete-a-Tete’ placed into a favorite blue matte-finished ceramic jar. I love picking daffodils. There is immense satisfaction in reaching down to the bottom of each stem and snapping it as one would snap a green bean. It is impossible not to smile.
Narcissus ‘King Alfred’
Handmade ceramic lidded jar
I grew up inside a small town in the rural south, surrounded by fields of cotton, tobacco, corn and soybeans. Driving away from town with my family to visit relatives on Sundays, riding past these fields, nearly every house I would see for miles and miles at this time of year had a clump or two of dancing yellow daffodils, announcing spring.
As one would expect time has altered this bucolic landscape. Driving in the countryside nowadays past these old homesites, there is evidence of past lives. With owners having died out, many of these old homesteads now sit abandoned. Heirs perhaps found jobs elsewhere and live too far away to maintain the homes, yet they keep memories alive by holding onto the property. Or perhaps they await better offers from the developers.
Regardless, often the land sits idle. Even if the buildings are long gone, almost always there remains a towering oak tree beside where the house once stood, and nearby, a patch of daffodils.
One spring along a familiar stretch of road that my husband and I had travelled for many years, I pointed out to him just such an old homesite.
I had never known who once had lived there, but the cheerful daffodils blooming near the old drive were a sight I knew to expect and to watch for.
Viewed from a car window those flowers had greeted me annually for decades, as they must have welcomed home the family that once inhabited the property. I haven’t travelled that road in a while, but that season I was not disappointed.
Intrigued, my husband wrote this poem.
Within this clearing rife with weeds,
No homely headstones stand askew,
But daffodils in patches tell
That here once worked a hand, a heart,
And there once stood a house, a home.
No headstones set this ground apart,
But daffodils in patches tell
Of heart and home as sure as bones.
(DVM, v.G, April 2007)
Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share daffodils and other flowers across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.