Wednesday, April 20, 2016

April 20, 2016 - An Accidental Death


It looks like it was an aster to me, a lucky little aster growing right along a beautiful river.  It was a wild aster, one not planted or planned by man but simply growing out of pure chance.  Perhaps a bird dropped one of its seeds.  Perhaps a good wind blew one of the seeds over to the very spot where the aster took root.  That was a lucky spot.  One inch over and it might have landed on a rock.  Another few inches further and it might have landed in the river and been carried away forever, never to grow.

An accidental life.
It was definitely an accidental life, a haphazard manifestation of the life force.  No cutworms sliced at its tiny new stem when it started to grow.  How lucky can you get?  No slugs destroyed the fresh green growth.  No insects devoured too much of the aster, although no plant goes unscathed by them.  No child pulled up the pretty flowers and handed them shyly to his mother to put in a vase.

It managed not to get drowned out by the river when its banks were swollen after a terrible rain.  Talk about good fortune.  The sun didn’t scorch it to death, especially with the reflection from the water.  The high winds that are always blowing along the river never seemed to be able to rake at its base.  No, it was sheer luck to have grown as it did.  Against all odds, it survived, thrived, and reproduced.

It was an accidental death as well, certainly not planned by the aster.  Having survived severe river conditions, a blistering sun, terrible winds, gnawing insects, and hungry birds, it finally succumbed to winter.  Quickly.  But all things succumb to winter; there’s no bargaining with it.  Winter is not selective in its killing.  It takes everything.

Except the seeds.  It can’t seem to do that.  It was an accidental oversight on winter’s part, one not planned or even thought of, but it’s too late to adjust its abilities now.  They have already been set in stone by Mother Nature.  The seeds contain a great deal of hidden potential, also set in stone long ago.  How lucky can you get?

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