May on the prairie

This morning I put the baby and the stroller in the car, and we drove to the entrance of the prairie trail.

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There is a weird, rolling openness to this prairie that charmed me when I first walked the trail a year ago. Unfortunately, I jumped the gun this morning… there were none of the interesting flowers I’d expected, and no mulberries or black raspberries yet. Fooey.

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Lots of this (goldenrod?)

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A little of this (clover?)

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And of this (different goldenrod?)

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A couple of surprise springs of this (spiderwort… plentiful in the woods, out of place on the prairie)

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And of this (some kind of vetch?)

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A sprinkling of this (buttercups?)

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And in the wooded parts, bowers and showers of this (honeysuckle). The honeysuckle is blooming all along the woodland path, too. It perfumes the air and reminds of May three years ago, when my mother and grandmother and aunt all took a day trip to see Lincoln’s New Salem Village. It was the same time of year, and the village is down in a river valley, full of woods. The Little Gray House Of Mine was on naked prairie, and being in the woods felt so cooling and sheltering and safe. I wished that I could live somewhere with trees and honeysuckle, somewhere with a wind break, somewhere that leaves would fall in the autumn and I could see wildflowers blooming in the spring. Well, I have that now. And I’m so glad.

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Amelia’s stoked, too.

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