Baby, sweet baby, you’re my drug
Come on and let me taste your stuff
Baby, sweet baby, bring me your gift
What surprise you gonna hit me with

I am waiting here for more
I am waiting by your door
I am waiting on your back steps
I am waiting in my car
I am waiting at this bar
I am waiting for your essence

—Lucinda Williams, “Essence”

Taura Bairin March 2nd

The unfolding of the plum blossoms continues. Carlos and I walk hand in hand to the park, aware of time. He has to go to sea soon, but today he wants to be with me out among these Japanese trees.

Excited people with maps of Taura and backpacks and blankets bustle up and down the stairs in the park. We allow our fellow strangers, as they let us, take photos, finding a good position, pushing the camera near the flowers. We wait for our chance to come close and see the layers of delicate petals press against themselves, opening, becoming.

This year the white blossoms are a little sparse. We wonder if the mild winter hurt the trees. Official Man with Clipboard walks among the trees, writing notes at each numbered tree. Some trees have ominously split trunks or have one heavy branch buttressed from below with bamboo. These trees must be fussed over all year so we may enjoy this short hanami season.

Taura Bairin March 2nd

The white blossoms are mostly fully bloomed, and some are even a bit wind-blown; now it is the time of the pink plum blossoms.

Taura Bairin March 2nd

The steep paths are lined with daffodils. Quiet people sit on blankets eating lunch among the trees.

Taura Bairin March 2nd

Not quite the full bloom on Sunday, perhaps this weekend…

Taura Bairin March 2nd

At the top of the hill, huge sea hawks circle above the picnics, threatening to dive in for a piece of sushi. Children roll down the dry grass hill, becoming dusty and looking like scarecrows losing hay.

From the hilltop, we look out to sea.

Taura Bairin March 2nd

I am thankful for the days when he is with me. I am thankful for the plum blossoms.

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