Although it happens each year, it still seems like a miracle. I am referring to the blossoming of the forgotten apple trees of the Hudson Valley.
Sixty-odd years ago when the Thruway was constructed -- does anyone even remember that? -- many farms were devoured by the concrete ribbon. The end result is that, for a brief week each spring, a forgotten apple tree or two lifts up its gnarled and bent branches and offers lovely pink apple blossoms to the passers-by.
I forget this annually. However, today as my bus whizzed past a copse of wild growth, those blossoms caught my eye. Miles further down the road another leftover tree beside the entrance to a rest stop was, without doubt, the most beautiful thing for miles around. One has to pay attention or this flash of loveliness is missed.
There is to me something so persevering about these trees which have long since lost their connections to farms or orchards, and yet have refused to give up living. With what pride they lay annual claim to blossom time in our valley. Each year they are more gnarled, more bent to the ground, more likely to have lost a branch or two to the fury of winter. It makes no difference. The sap still rises or, as we locals say, "The trees have blushed." These venerable apple trees participate in that annual ritual.
I love to imagine one old branch saying to the one above or below, "We can still do it, and someone will notice us."
They have and I did see them and gave thanks to their Creator.