bloodroot

This is the time when I always watch for where the bloodroot will appear.  I notice that, like mint, it will send out shoots underground and migrate, coming up in different places each year.  It hasn’t migrated too far this year and it is with a big smile that I see it appearing right in the center of this little circular garden just out my kitchen window…

And how dwarfed it seems in the otherwise early spring landscape of dried leaves, moist earth, and barely discernible shoots of new growth everywhere.  These small plants, native to the forests of New England, were once revered by Native American cultures for all the gifts inherent in the root, making herbal remedies for skin cancers to sore throats, for dyeing fabric, and for ritual skin paint.  The delicate white and yellow flower that emerges from the wrap of a large squarish green leaf belies the primal quality of the blood red juice that forms in a bulb of the root.. Interesting that this juice is actually toxic in large doses.  It is definitely not edible.   So, why the fascination and obsession with this particular plant?  I don’t know.  I just am.  Perhaps it is the wonder of this delicate flower that is wrapped ever so protectively as it is being ‘birthed’, while being nourished and supported by the richness of its life blood inside Mother Earth.   And perhaps it is no coincidence that today is my birthday, a day when I am feeling the wonder of a little girl just looking out at the magical world for the first time, anew each spring, from the warmth of a protective wing, and from the core of strength that comes from my ‘Mother’….

What comes to me next is the series of cookbooks on my shelves, “The Best of BLOODROOT, Volumes One and Two, vegetarian and vegan recipes.  I am remembering how excited my friend Lee is in introducing me to this unique and special place in Bridgeport Ct. near her home, a ‘community’ restaurant and collaborative founded on the principles of shared energy, nourishing spirit, and the forming of deep roots to support it….she tells me that when she thinks of this restaurant she thinks of me, or is it vice versa?   Either way, I am destined for a visit there, wondering what it is I will experience…

We arrive early for dinner one beautiful evening, I can’t even remember what season it is, except that it is warm and we can sit on benches facing the waters of the Connecticut Sound while waiting for the restaurant to open for the evening, and we commune with the several cats that call this place home.  And even before walking through the door I feel that certain something inside that tells me I am ‘home’.  Selma, one of the founding members of this collaborative, is there to greet us at the door and it doesn’t take but a moment to establish common ground with her (we even drive exactly the same car!!) and I feel the truth of her presence as welcoming, humble, and full of wisdom.  The food is fantastic, delicious meals selected from a limited menu of the day, a rich and varied bounty that manifests in ethnically identified vegetarian fare.  It is a special meal to be sharing with a special friend, with whom the shared experience of  ‘Sacred Feminine’ comes to life in a heartfelt way now.  And that is what this rare flower of a place embodies and protects at the same time: a deep rooted connection to the Sacred Feminine in a way that feels as natural and as necessary as the lifeblood we need to have running in our veins to survive…

I’ve now focused in on one of the perfectly, slightly asymmetrical open blossoms that has enjoyed its time in this spring sun and is ready to let go and explore.  What a beautiful moment to rest in, recognizing the joy of opening to the world in wonder, and then letting go, knowing that the connection to what is nourishing and true inside will always be there….

2 thoughts on “bloodroot

  1. So perfect for today! I, too, eagerly await the Bloodroot blossoms in my garden as Spring is “born”. HBD!

  2. Happy Birthday Kathy. YOU are a gift to me.

    Was thinking of you as I drove past Northampton today on my way up to Vermont.

    Beautiful photo and I can just see you and Lee enjoying that homey-sounding place.

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