Stone Bunny’s eyes are twitching. She is in a deep REM sleep, dreaming in vivid colors. Dreaming about Spring!
She is flying into the forsythia bush….
She keeps coming closer….
She smashes into the bush and the bush becomes red!
Meanwhile, down in the Pub, The Plants do not sleep. Oh no. No one sleeps there. The Pub is tense – hot, stuffy and tense. This is hard weather for the perennials. The surface of the earth above is frozen while strong, cold winds whip the landscape. Though the perennials have gained refuge in the Pub, they cannot ignore a hard freeze above. The cold comes through the roof, seeking to drain their vitality. The Pub is artificially warmed from below to protect them from the cold above, yet it is all very tough on them. Some are sick. Some will die. They know there are a few inches of snow on the ground because Yarrow told them. They can feel it insulating the roof. Thank goodness for the snow! During the previous freeze, a foot of snow covered the landscape so the plants barely felt the cold. The Pub was well insulated. This freeze is proving more durable with less snow to protect them. Better a little than none, they suppose, as the frozen air and cold wind are brutal. Ahhh, for the good old days of 30 degrees and sunshine. Those are the days when the perennials have fun in the Pub. Now, they are just trying to survive.
Into to this tense and weighty scene, walks Lavender. Yes, Lavender. She hasn’t been seen in the Pub for years but here she is. Her very self! The moment Lavender walks in, the low murmur of tense chatter ceases and all is silent. Everyone looks at Lavender. Everyone is amazed by Lavender. She is quite a presence, exuding strength, power and a sense of well being. Lavender lives up top where she revels in the hard winter weather, shrugging off a deep freeze like it is a hot summer day. She brings that sense of tough charisma with her. (Imagine, if you will, a bright light entering a poorly lit room. Or Imagine, if you will, the feeling you have when you come into a warm, cozy kitchen after you have been out in a brisk wind. Think of the feeling you have on your cheeks at that moment, the sense that they are simultaneously frozen and flaming. The suspicion that they must surely be four times larger than they really are, burning while they exude the essence of the cold wind. Can you picture that? Good, because that is the kind of energy Lavender broadcast to the Pub dwellers as she walked through the door.)
Today, on this frozen morning, Lavender looks like this.
As she walks into the Pub, Lavender must surely present herself as something more like this.
The room is silent. You could hear a dandelion seed drop. Lavender looks around, checking out the various groups. The bulbs, Daffodil, Crocus, Tulip and their friends are huddled together, conserving their energy, preparing to venture up top soon. The spring woodland flowers, Trillium, Bloodroot, Dutchman’s Breeches and the like appear to be weathering the winter well enough. They will leave here soon as well. The big summer bloomers, Gloriosa Daisy, Black-Eyed Susan, Coneflower, Liatris, Gaillardia, and their gang look a bit pale, she thinks. Bee Balm is hunkered down with her cousins the Mints who, for some odd reason, are hanging out with Oregano. It is quite a scene. Much busier than Lavender has ever seen it here. She wonders why they all stare so.
Globe Thistle breaks the silence. “Lavender, my old friend,” he says as he steps forward, giving her a friendly, welcoming embrace. “It is wonderful to see you. To what remarkable circumstance do we owe the pleasure?”
Lavender smiles. Her old friend Globe Thistle. He loves her and he is glad to see her. She feels welcome. She is glad she came.
“I have come at Yarrow’s request,” she reports. “As you know, The Council is planning for the summer. The last few days, they have been engaged in a grand discussion of which seeds to purchase and where to plant them. Yarrow is disabled due to the snow. Evidently, I am the only member of the community who can hear the Council at this time. Yarrow was most agitated that I report to you. I do hope you all appreciate Yarrow’s determination, while you kindly overlook his less stellar qualities.”
The crowd in the Pub chuckles. Yarrow! The tension relaxes. Lavender’s vital presence, word from above and a touch of humor go a long way toward reducing the sense of unease which has been creeping through the crowd.