Magical Winterbloom

I encountered witch hazel for the first time at Cootes Paradise in March of this year. This nature sanctuary in Burlington is one of my favourite places to go for a long walk and take pictures. There was a cold breeze. Everything was grey. Not a splash of colour could be seen throughout the entire park, except for the numerous red cardinals perched amid the trees.

I was chasing three golden eagles with my wife to take a snapshot of them. After getting a couple of photos and wishing I had a more powerful lens to get a closer zoom on them, as well as picked a different combination of shutter speed, aperture and ISO settings, my nose picked up on a refreshing scent. It smelled like a citrus fruit singing a lullaby. It felt calm and relaxing. If I could touch the smell directly with my mind than it would have felt like passing a hand through a running stream, surrounded by a forest covered in morning dew. The smell was of witch hazel and I was surprised that I never experienced it before. There are so many simple, but beautiful things in this world that are sometimes in plain sight, but you begin to notice them later on in life.

I was also surprised that anything was bloom at this time of year, considering everything around the witch hazel looked like a desolate wasteland in comparison. No wonder another name for it is “winterbloom”. Like a desert rose popping up amidst the endless sandy horizons, witch hazel appeared like an oasis amidst the last gasps of winter.

Anyway, here’s a witch hazel ballad for you:

I stumbled upon witch hazel,
My nose made an appraisal,
Not even a fresh bagel,
Ever smelled so playful.

The sword was unstable,
I picked up a soup ladle,
From the round table,
Did I end up in a fable?

A unique winter bloom,
Better than any perfume,
Stomped out all gloom,
With its yellow plume,
Like a stylish costume,
Hang on to my legume,
Cooking will resume,
Is what I assume.

The beauty of simplicity,
With all its elasticity,
Annihilates all toxicity,
Like a blast of electricity.

I grabbed a teapot,
Chose a nice spot,
Bit into my apricot,
Saluted a cosmonaut,
On my way to Camelot,
Hey there Lancelot!

The vegetables brought,
Along with whatnot,
Beside the flowerpot,
That had been sought,
On second thought,
Where is the soup pot?

I warn you not,
To follow this plot,
To cook this lot,
Here in this spot,
Use some forethought,
It’s a park you cannot,
Or have you forgot?
You’ll earn a mugshot,
That’s food for thought.

Audio version:

Author: ivan

I enjoy taking snapshots of nature, wildlife, scenic views or other things I find along the way. I enjoy taking bird photos the most. This is a blog with my photos and commentary. You may also find funky recipes, sketchy poems, random quotes or something off topic.

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