Courage at Twilight: Popcorn Popping on the Pear Tree

I grew up singing “Primary” songs in the Church’s Sunday classes for children.  A perennial favorite still is a springtime song celebrating blossoming fruit trees: “Popcorn Popping.”  The song has nothing to do with Jesus or the Church, but helps keep the children entertained and orderly: the lyrics and catchy tune never fail to rouse children’s enthusiasm to sing.

I looked out the window, and what did I see?

Popcorn popping on the apricot tree!

Spring has brought me such a nice surprise:

Popcorn popping right before my eyes.

Eye can take an armful and make a treat:

A popcorn ball that will smell so sweet.

It wasn’t really so, but it seemed to be:

Popcorn popping on the apricot tree.

The popcorn is popping on Dad’s ornamental pear trees, in full white-blossom bloom.  Strangely, though, as pretty a sight as they provide, the blooms smell more like putrescence than popcorn or perfume.  So, I admire the flowers from a distance.  Large limbs have occasionally broken away from the trunks, unable to support their own weight, leaving great gaping scars which we painted over to help heal.  Dad has trimmed and shaped the trees to better bear their bulk and to provide a more pleasing garden architecture.  In a short week, the delicate popcorn blossoms will fall and float away, and the glossy green leaves will take the summer show.  In the fall, the leaves will turn a million hues of rusty purple red, perfect for pressing.  But tonight, a late wet snow is falling.

Pictured: Mom’s and Dad’s ornamental pear trees in bloom.

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