There exists a short section of a wooded path, that, for just a brief period moves from unremarkable to ethereal. It is one that I’ve stood before, one that I’ve recorded to memory. One that I’ve only seen it in this delicate state but a handful of times. Always in the spring, always on a sunny day with a degree of chilled humidity in the air. And each time, I’ve stopped and taken in the scene.
This particular place is a section of trail that is no more than a hundred meters in length — perhaps shorter. The path is narrow, the ground slightly sandy, and flanked by several apple trees. It is these trees, under the right season and condition, that transform this space. From one that would be passed by without second thought, to one that commands your attention. In spring, while the weather shifts between moods, and the apple blossoms are in full bloom, there is a delicacy to this space.
Every so often, the memories of this place come to me by way of a dream. Nevermore than glimpses of those moments I was there. It is only myself, standing before this place, observing. It never presents itself for more than it is or was — as it need not be anything other than itself. This is notable in the fact that I don’t typically remember most dreams, for me, they fade as quickly as I awake. But this place, it has stayed with me.
I will spare you the cliched mention of the fragrance, the colors, and other sensory descriptions. I will, however, mention the delicacy of the scene, for it is that which is most vivid in my mind. If you have ever held a petal of apple blossom, then surely you’ve felt its delicacy. There is a lightness, a fragility to them. Even under the lightest pressure, they bruise and begin to wither. And when in fullest bloom, as the petals fall to the ground below, they create a blanket, a perfect finite blanket. This place of fallen petals will only last but maybe a few hours, time will wither and brown them. That is why, when I was fortunate to come across this moment, I made every attempt to tread lightly around them, hoping to leave them just a little longer, even if only for a few more minutes.
This place doesn’t come to me often, in fact, it’s difficult to recall the last time that it did. However, when it does, I don’t ask questions of it, I let it be whatever it needs to be at that moment. It has been years since I’ve returned, and even more since I’ve seen the blossoms. As time has passed, my connection to these woods has faded, but not those moments of this place. Perhaps someday, I’ll be met with the right incentive to head back.