Whether mid-winter or early autumn
the crocus are unexpected,
surprising even to the observant.
Hidden potential beneath the surface,
an incubation readily triggered
by advancing or retreating light from above.
Waiting with temerity,
to be called forth from earthly grime
and granted reprieve from indefinite interment.
A luminous gift of hope and beauty
borne from a humble bulb;
plain and only dirt adorned.
Summoned, the deep lavender harbinger rises
from sleeping frosted ground in February
or spent topsoil, exhausted in October.
These bold blossoms do not pause
for snow and ice nor hesitate to pierce through
a musty carpet of fallen leaves.
They break free to surge skyward
cloaked in tightly bound brilliance,
spaced strategically to be deployed against the darkness.
Slowly unfurling, the violet petals peel to reveal golden crowns,
royally renouncing the chill of winterís beginning and end,
staying brazenly alive when little else is.
In the end, they painfully wilt, deeply bruised and purple
under the Sunís reflection made manifest;
returning defeated, inglorious, fallen, to dust.
They will rise yet again.
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