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Ears of the Earth

By Ann Driggers

This spring it appears pasqueflowers, also known as the prairie crocus, are all over the place. I don't remember them being so prevalent in previous years. Exclamations of joy at their sight are a common occurance on our trail runs. Not only are they so beautiful and delicate they are the first flowers that we really see here in the high country. The Ute indians called them the "ears of the earth" as they listen for the coming of spring. The indian legend of the how the crocus came to be is here. In short the flower, then a simple white one, was granted three wishes for giving friendship to an indian boy during several cold early spring nights. The flower said "I would like to have the warmth and beauty of the yellow sun at my heart, the grace of all the purple mountains around me and a heavy fur robe to keep me warm."

My friend Janis is quite the poet so I challenged her to write a poem about the ears of the earth. Here are her wonderful words:

Romanticizing Nature

Natives named them
"Ears of the earth"
The purple-blue petals
Putting on alluring armor
Pushing, through frosty soil

Angelic hairs around each
Perfectly freckled flower
Resemble ears of cats or deer
It isn't entirely unbelievable
That flowers listen to the wind
For a rustle of summer
Or something...
Perhaps the hungry hum
Of hovering wings

The ripping cold winds
Encourage delicate heads to
Pull protective petals inward
Pasques are amongst
The first to risk
Remnants of winter

Now they are opening, offering
Sweet parts to pollination
To something like love.

~~~ Janis
 

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