Cherry Blossoms Welcome April

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“Between our two lives
there is also the life of
the cherry blossom.”
Matsuo Bashō

The cherry blossoms grace our lane ways and gardens, welcoming April, the month that was, in ancient Rome, sacred to Venus, the goddess of love and beauty. April is the month that gave us Leonardo da Vinci, William Shakespeare, William Wordsworth and, more recently, Wangari Maathai, Maya Angelou and Ella Fitzgerald.  There is a warmth in the chill of an April evening, perfect for the beginning of journeys as immortalized in Geoffrey Chaucer’s, The Canterbury Tales.

What a strange thing!
to be alive
beneath cherry blossoms.”
Kobayashi Issa

For me, April has always been about cherry blossoms.  Vancouver is renowned for our approximately 50,000 cherry trees, which flower in varying shades of pink and white.  Every year, we hold a Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival.

“In the cherry blossom’s shade
there’s no such thing
as a stranger.”
Kobayashi Issa

The cherry blossom is Japan’s national flower that has given birth to hanami, a century-old custom that is said to have its origins in the Nara period (710-794) which simply means flower viewing.  Families and friends gather under the canopy of flowering cherry trees to share a meal and gaze up at the delicate white and pink against a pristine sky of blue. Nighttime brings out the paper lanterns that people carefully place in the trees to add a spectacular illumination, which highlights the profound idea of the ephemeral nature of life. The blossoms come for a moment to bestow a graceful elegance,  covering pathways with petals, then, slipping away with the silent promise to return the next year.

So, my dear friends, I invite you to join me under the canopy of a Vancouver cherry tree.

Cherry Blossoms from Rebecca Budd aka Clanmother on Vimeo.

 

“Cherry blossoms – lights of years past.”
Matsuo Bashō

42 thoughts on “Cherry Blossoms Welcome April

  1. Such a lovely informative post, Rebecca. We are glad to join you all under the cherry blossoms. By the way, I have also read that, in Japan, the cherry blossom also personify the fragility and beauty of life – a reminder that life is almost overwhelmingly beautiful but also tragically short.

    Liked by 2 people

    • A profound and powerful insight – one that reminds us that life is indeed tragically short, that all energies should be expended for good, for beauty, for love. It would certainly add to our personal happiness and enhance our ability to engage in positive ways within a world that is perilously divided. Thank you!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Flowering trees of any kind make me inordinately happy. Your cherry trees are particularly beautiful, particularly set against that pure blue sky. I enjoyed learning out the role of the cherry blossoms in Japanese culture. What a wonderful thing to celebrate the ephemeral beauty that is this life.

    Liked by 1 person

    • In our current reality, we are rewarded for speed, profitability, decisive action. While these are excellent qualities, there is also merit in reflection and meditation – for when time is taken to engage in these activities we seem to have a deeper understanding of our place in the world. I confess I find “speed” exhilarating. Speed at crossing tasks off my “to do” list. Speed at reducing my e-mail correspondence, cleaning the house etc. But sometimes, there is a longing just to sit under the canopy of a cherry tree. I am so glad that you joined me today, my dear friend.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Oh Liz – thank you for this most excellent article. There are so many stories hidden in the folds of history. Nabokov Abe is an exceptional writer. Can you imagine what it would have been like to discover this “treasure trove.” A reminder that diversity is essential for our survival. Hugs and many thanks. You find the best articles.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Yes it must have been an amazing moment. I was reading recently about the chap who discovered the archeological site of Troy as proof that it was a real city – how incredible that must have been!

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Beautiful video. I do not know how I missed this lovely post until now. You have captured some colorful trees in full bloom. The one outside my high rise is not in full bloom yet. It is very late this spring. But, the longer to enjoy their gorgeous full blooms. Thank you for this informative post. You are a really very excellent writer. Thank you for sharing your knowledge. I love your posts.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I am delighted that you did find this post. I follow the cherry blossoms around Vancouver and North Vancouver. They come out at different times. There is two trees that I follow closely – they are the last ones to comes out, but somehow I think that they are the most beautiful of all. Perhaps it is because they signal the end until the next season. Thank you for loving my posts – you are my most ardent supporter – always have been….

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautiful! Thank you for sharing your celebration of cherry blooms! It’s still cold here. Not a bud to be seen. Winter just won’t let go.

    Liked by 1 person

    • We would love to have you! I look forward every spring to the cherry blossoms. Right now, I’m waiting for a late blooming variety to blossom – this is my absolute favourite. Checked it last night – the blossoms are still hidden. Now, the tulips have arrived, just as the blossoms slip away until next year. Thank you for connecting – very much appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you – the earth is waking up and I hear the singing. On the other side of Canada – Nova Scotia just had a huge snowfall. I look forward to seeing their photos of snow and I send phones of cherry blossoms. Thank you for stopping by – very much appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I can almost inhale the perfume of the flowering stage of these beautiful blossoms, as in humer or humé, in the French vernacular, a more authentic description of indulging rather than smelling the bouquet, of nature’s sculpted beauty.
    That actual sensation may be but the very recent memory these blossoms we enjoyed in passing by a wondrous garden in the city of Lucas of Toscana Italy, just last week.
    Once more a beautiful post as usual, dear Rebecca!

    Liked by 1 person

    • We live in a world that offers us unimaginable beauty. I can only imagine the warmth of an afternoon in a fragrant Italian garden where the sun, gentle breeze and blue sky come together to create a peaceful atmosphere. Welcome home!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Fabulous capture. Thank you for introducing to the Library of Congress Blog – always been checking out all of the information. So much to learn, so little time, but that is the best part. I know that I will never, ever run out of things to learn. Have a wonderful weekend.

      Liked by 1 person

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