It was only a few weeks ago that I was missing the gloriously sweet blooms of my wild honeysuckle bush. It seemed to me that its blossoming time for the year was over, ending in the middle of summer before July’s conclusion. I had been in love with these flowers for a long time. I was a child when I first fell under the enchantment of honeysuckle: I was walking around my garden one summer, and was surprised to suddenly encounter an intensely sweet smell radiating from the bin area at the back of my garden. This area normally stank, so it felt like some magic was stirring. Looking a little closely I found that the bush that spilled over the tall, old wooden gate that exited to the alleyway, was punctuated with some tiny trumpet-like flowers of moonbeam-white and sunshine-gold. Inhaling their nectar-sweet essence, I felt as joyous as a hummingbird. I asked my father what these flowers were. “This is honeysuckle.” The name remained with me ever since, a name which suggests sweetness, wholesomeness, nurture and faerie joy – all of which I associate with this wonderful flower. Ever since that experience I have always looked forward to the blossoming of our honeysuckle bush, and as each year went by my love for it only grew.
This spring/summer I was lucky to see more of white honeysuckle more than usual. While living in Cambridge for university, in my dreamy walks I would often become mesmerized by the magnificent aroma that exuded from the great honeysuckle bush entwined around a wire fence close to my university. I was overjoyed the first time I noticed it there. I remember that day: it was the early dusk of a spring day, when the sky had begun to take on swirls of peach, pansy and raspberry, and although the vibrant blue sky had softened, residues of the hot afternoon sun remained and in the intense beauty of the atmosphere, a divine sweetness was brewing and emitting magic. Of course by now I knew what this beloved smell was, and was delighted to find that not too far away was a large faeries’ choir of honeysuckle trumpets! It made me light up every time I walked past, and I suppose this reflects that magic can be found in the everyday – if we open our hearts, minds and senses.
I have quite a few ‘favourite flowers’, but of them all I think it’s white honeysuckle that I’ve grown up with, gotten to know better, and come to love more. At first I associated the scent with a simple nectar sweetness. Now I feel more fine-tuned to its essence and spirit. White honeysuckle smells sweet like spring grass, fresh milk, and wild honey. The flowers and the foliage remind me of crisp summer sunshine, cool lively breezes, green leaves dancing with the sparkling sun filtering through them, and a clear lake as fresh as a Mediterranean garden. I was so happy to find near the start of this month that our honeysuckle hadn’t had its last blossoms of the year after all; it seems we’re blessed with a few more flowers for early autumn. So their fresh breath is still alive and their sweet perfume lingers. The jocund trumpet blooms are still singing – albeit more slowly – their enchanting melody.