My friend Jennie brought a me a bunch of bluebells, knowing how I love them. My father grew bluebells in a shady patch down the bottom of his garden, where they spread freely under the oak tree. When he died, I dug up some bulbs and planted them in my own garden. Some years later I left that house, but took a few bulbs with me to the new one, and also planted some at the bach.
Each spring when they flowered, I thought of them as ‘Darcy’s bluebells’. But I left my house two years ago, and no longer had a garden. Building work smothered the bluebell patch at the bach, leaving just a few. I gathered them, all four stems, just recently, feeling a little sad.
Then Jennie arrived, with her abundant bunch. ‘I love bluebells too,’ she said. ‘These originally grew in my grandfather’s garden.’ Her bulbs also carry a heritage of love, family, and continuity. And so it is; we tend our gardens, we cherish the hidden bulbs which secretly multiply, and we gift them to others. Love may seem to dive underground at times, but in spring it surfaces once more and sweetly asks to be shared.