Northern Spring

Primavera, the embodiment of spring, from the Villa Arianna, Stabiae, 1st century AD © Soprintendenza Speciale per i Beni Archeologici di Napoli e Pompei

If the wheel of the celestial seasons turns on the axis of a pomegranate* it is not too surprising that spring is as contrary and unpredictable as any daughter of Eve.

In the north she arrives as a thawing ice maiden suffusing the dark skies with a soft opalescent light as she is release from the grasp of Hades. Still wrapped in the soft grey of winter she scatters ice diamonds to form the dew to bathe May Queens and the flowers for maidenly coronets. Her smile may be ripe with promises but her touch can be frigid and her breath glacial.

Innocently coquettish she will turn a young man’s fancy, inspire elegiac larks and transform a monochrome landscape with gentle verdant hues. Her honeyed words drift on a warm zephyr and fill the air with the fragrance of romance to enchant the unwary. As a courtesan might reveal a glimpse of stocking or a harlot a flash a crimson petticoat, she will lure you with fantasies of summer and then turn a cold shoulder. Beware the raging passions of spring fever which burn at midday, are tepid by tea time  and turn cold by the light of the moon. After all March madness turns us all into April fools.

*There is always more to a Greek myth than meets the eye. One has to feel sorry for Demeter who was prepared to plunge the world into eternal winter to get Persephone back from Hades. I do not think that she would have been best pleased when she discovered that her daughter had eaten pomegranate seeds and so had to return to Hades for part of the year.

11 thoughts on “Northern Spring

  1. Another eloquent story dripping off the pen of the Croft Gardener… she does it so well 😉 I don’t suppose Persephone was happy having to put up with her daughter picking bits of pomegranate seed from between her teeth for ever and a day either!

    • Thank you. Well there is always a moral to a Romano-Greek myth, if you don’t do what your Mother says you will spend 6 months in Hades.

  2. PJ

    Such a beautiful post – and we’ve certainly had a lot of March madness this year!

    • I also think Spring has been particularly flirtatious in this part of the world, blue skies and sunshine and icy NE winds, making fools of us all.

  3. I love the story about Demeter and Persephone, it’s one of my favourites. I think it’s wonderfully symbolic of the strength of a mother’s love.

    • I admit that I’m a great lover of stories and the ancient myths all have a grain of wisdom to chew upon.

  4. You have such an incredible way with words! So interesting to have the fickle spring weather be compared to Greek myths. Very interesting to read.

    • Thank you. As usual the idea just appeared. I will now go away and muse on inspiration and how the brains links seemingly unconnected ideas, but then its a beautiful day and the garden calls.

  5. We are having just that sort of spring up here. For an hour at a time she seduces me into thinking it is time to sow and plant and then trips off laughing when I am not watching her leaving me with the cold wind blowing in my face.

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