Monday, May 01, 2006

It's Spring! (Practically Summer!)

Springtime in Texas means wildflowers.

Lots and lots and LOTS of wildflowers, which are especially visible when one goes on a roadtrip. Having been on a couple of roadtrips in the past couple of weeks, I got to see lots of wildflowers. Easter weekend, the bluebonnets were still fairly thick along the roadsides--this wasn't a particularly good bluebonnet year because it was a dry winter--and the evening primroses were going pretty strong. (In Texas, most primroses are pink, shading to white, with very, very few yellow ones turning up--which are generally called sundrops.) This past weekend, the bluebonnets are almost gone, but the primroses are still out and the yuccas have begun to bloom in the places where they've gotten a little water, along with various sunflowers, tickseed and blanket flowers. There will be wildflowers all summer of one variety or another.

I don't know that the wildflowers are such a great inspiration to my writing, but I do enjoy them. I take lots of pictures of them, and sometimes I paint them. They're an inspiration for my heart and soul. They make me feel good.

And I think as writers--as human beings--we need that kind of thing. Stuff that just makes us feel good. Things we don't have to feed or pick up after or talk to, that we can just look at and enjoy. All those other things, like pets and children and spouses, are tremendously important too. They are, I think, the primary inspirations in our lives. But sometimes, you just have to stop and smell the flowers. Even if you do have to be careful of the thorns and the prickles. ;)

What kinds of things make you smile?


Nancy Morse said...

I agree that wildflowers are right up there at the top of my list of things that make me smile. Another is hot air balloons. We see them frequently down here in S. FL. When I'm walking my dog by the lake on a quiet Sunday morning, and I see a balloon up there against the blue sky, its reflection mirrored in the lake, it makes me feel so peaceful and good I could almost cry. And sometimes when I need a lift, I go to the pet store and play with the pupplies. They never fail to make me smile.

Nancy Herkness said...

Gail, I know exactly what you mean. Beauty is something we all need and respond to. I remember Barbara Samuels describing a sunset as being so beautiful that she wanted to weave it into her hair. We want to try to keep the vision with us but I think that part of the appeal of a wildflower or a sunset or a hot air ballon is that it's there and gone. It's impossible to preserve it forever so we appreciate it all the more. But I'm with you: I'm stopping to smell the roses--and daffodils and lilacs and hyacinths--with great joy this spring.

Colleen Thompson said...

I'm a transplant to Texas, and the spring wild flowers are among my very favorite things here. Love 'em.

My well is refilled by journeying to natural places and seeing wildlife in its native environment. I'm inspired by glimpses of animals as mundane as deer, rabbits, hummingbirds, and javelinas (a brushy little Texas wild hog) to coyotes, bighorn sheep and pronghorn antelope. One of my life goals is to see a cougar in the wild (from the safety of my car, anyway). I even like the shivery sorts of sightings, such as snakes, tarantulas, and scorpions (though I'm scared of the latter especially and don't want any of them inside with me.)