There was a famous tale about a Japanese general who postponed an impending battle because of the arrival of Sakura—Cherry Blossom.
As I marveled at the mesmerizing beauty of the little pink flowers, I immediately understood why it could stop armies from annihilating each other even for a brief moment. Maybe a samurai knew it best; that the fleeting splendor might be the last vestige of life before his life ends from the sharp blade of the katana.
To see the people sitting on picnic blankets under the trees celebrating Hanami or flower viewing give me delight knowing I wasn’t the only one trying to let my worries float away.
Tomorrow, the storm will come. The high winds will blow away the beautiful pink flowers that had given unending joy to thousands of people who came to witness its magic. For the past two weeks when the nonstop blooms of the Cherry trees made the people stop to envision the direction of their lives and as the coming spring make its way around the corner, the saying “here today and gone tomorrow” is evident. It rings true with a person’s existence.
Like a teenage summer love, the intense burst of feeling is consumed every second as if it will never end. Then as soon as the heat of summer wears off, the encounter ends—only to be revisited in a lover’s imagination.
As I leave the tree-lined creek, I turn back one more time and burn the image in my mind knowing the flowers that made me pause for a moment will be gone.
Other flowers will arrive in spring. The searing heat of summer will come. Then the yellowing leaves in the fall will litter the ground. Then…the countdown will begin again with the arrival of the pink Cherry flowers.
As the cherry trees fade, I could still hear the rustling of the pink flowers in the distance.