f Morning Rose Prayer Gardens: May 22, 2011

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Fragrant Memories

Red Lilac, howfinds.co.cc

     Each spring when the air is rich with fragrance I am taken back to days of wonder when I ambled alone through my childhood neighborhood in Detroit. It seemed every street had a lilac bush in lavender, white or dark reddish-purple. I remember one yard had a lovely and strongly perfumed white flowering shrub, which as an adult I learned was a Viburnum  ‘burkwoodii’. There are other scents that evoke childhood moments of delight. There was the heady odor from wasteland ponds coming back to life, the tickling smell of grass being mowed, and the rich musty scent of blackcurrant bushes.

Blackcurrant, sagebud.com

     With my head tipped back I would often follow my nose, deeply drawing in a scent as I tried to find its source.
     There are other smells that stir my heart. The smell of fresh dill still carries me back to my grandmother’s kitchen and when we would pickle hot green tomatoes. She and I would also make hundreds of jars of jellies and jams for Christmas giving. The aroma from black raspberries reducing for jelly would cling to my clothes for hours after we had finished waxing the jars.
     Scent is a wondrous thing, a curious gift from God. It cannot be dreamed or imagined. Yet it can carry us adrift into the past and at the same moment startle us into the present.