The Hellebore

The Hellebore
by Theodora Goss

It was January, and yet
the green leaves of the hellebore still stuck
out of last year’s leaf mold, mostly oak
and maple, edged with frost
(there was frost all over the garden),
rising leathery green against the brown,
and underneath I could see the pale cream buds
of what, eventually, would become flowers like bowls
of milk, the color of a wedding gown,
as soft as the cheek of a newborn,
as elegant as one of those engravings
from the Edo period, stylized
and meaning something other than itself:
resiliency, rebirth. The promise
of Spring. But they did not have to mean
anything in particular, as I stood there admiring
their tenacity: I simply wanted them
to continue being themselves, and for myself to learn
a little, just a little, of their endurance.

(The image is a nineteenth-century botanical print.)

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1 Response to The Hellebore

  1. Nancy says:

    I planted three Hellebore plants in my Garden last year. They have grown, and I hope they will spread yet more. It’s magickal to have flowers in the Garden in the dead of Winter, isn’t it…

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