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Jessica Keener Headshot

Hello, Spring

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Since my father's passing in December 2010, and his wintry memorial in January in Boston, I've been waiting for spring's warmth and release. It came in this unexpected way.

We have a plant in our house. (A total of two plants because I have a red thumb, or whatever color is the opposite of green.) This plant was a gift from my father when we moved into an apartment 15 years ago.

Gardening was my father's passion.

When my father gave us this plant, it was robust. For two years it bloomed pink flowers that looked like fluted champagne glasses with feathers. We moved to the city and the blooming stopped. But the plant kept on. It grew leggy and sometimes looked wrinkled. I tried placing it closer to the light, then further away. No blooms. I watered it more or less. I transferred it to a larger container. Nothing. More years passed. This plant kept on, but remained flowerless.

As I mentioned, my dad died this past December.

In February, after 13 years, this plant started to bud, then pop pink flowers! It's still blooming. The flowers, slowly opening these past few weeks, are making their way around the circumference of the plant.

It's possible that there's a logical reason for why these flowers suddenly decided to appear after such a long dormancy, but I don't have one.

My father died at age 88. He was a complicated, damaged soul who found peace in the garden.

Do you believe in these mysterious harbingers? Messages from beyond?

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