The lilac tree next to our living room window is blooming. I like the fact that unlike the cherry blossoms that show up before the leaves appear, lilacs bloom next to or side by side with leaves, giving the impression of a perfect bouquet for offering.
Perhaps it’s their self-effacing quality that draws me to lilacs. Their demeanor is subtle and unpretentious. Flamboyancy is not their style, and they’re perfectly happy to remain in the background hiding behind other ostentatious trees or bushes and you only discover them from a mellow fragrance wafting in the air. …
By Shankar Chaudhuri
As usual the cherry blossoms (widely known as Sakura in Japan) have descended on us in their respective splendors: Yoshino Cherries with their vibrant white blossoms, Weeping Cherries (Shidare-zakura) with their look of a gently flowing waterfall and the soon-to-bloom multi-layered Kwanzans with their deep pink double blossoms resembling carnations.
How should we perceive these astonishingly beautiful blossoms during the midst of a pandemic? Just before the world was about to be plunged into World War II, this is how the New York Times reflected on the cherry blossoms on April 2, 1939:
In other world capitals…
Writer, critic, market researcher, world traveler and former professor of history. Passionate about art, literature, culture, animals, nature, and human rights.