Every spring since I’ve written it, I’ve looked around anxiously to see what stage everything is in, what’s in flower now and what isn’t. I want my depiction of a Texas Hill Country spring to be accurate. Every spring is different (thankfully, I add, since I’ve noticed some slightly different schedules in my novel); this year, for example, growth has slowed down because of cold weather and sparse rainfall. But early springtime is the time of year that I gaze with satisfaction at the things that inspired my book and feel again what I captured in the writing of it.
Here are a couple of excerpts:
Between the garden and the juniper woods was a short span of lush grass dotted with wildflowers. Here was the most beautiful and varied bouquet in any of our fields. There were bluebonnets, Indian paintbrushes, wild onions, prairie verbenas, wild mustard, and many more species with only a few representatives; small white hemlock tied them all together, like a wild baby’s breath. We waded our way through carefully, making sure not to step on any of the bright little heads. The breeze wafted a delicately sweet scent past our noses, as if only for our pleasure.
“Mmm. Do you smell that?” I asked. “Bluebonnets. Such a fresh, sweet, nectar-y smell, yet with substance to it. I always thought that should be what butterflies smell like.”
Right before the pecan bottoms, there was a green kernel of irresistible deciduous woods. The oaks, elms, and their companions were leafed out in the most beautiful shades of spring verdure, rising high and ethereal as well as low and intimately earthy right beside us. It was a songbird’s paradise, and the birds certainly knew its reputation; the branches were alive with their flapping and chirping.
Praise God for spring!