I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it. (Alice Walker)
There is a place in the corner of the park not far from where the bunnies roost. It rests against a tall but gentle hill on the back side, where a wide circle of crab apple trees grow, short and squat like pretty soldiers standing at ease. While most of the white blossoms have browned and curled and fallen away, littering the ground around the trunks of their trees like rusted snow, the purple blossoms have hung on, growing brighter and smelling sweeter each morning. It is a quiet spot, one Duncan and I have spent innumerable hours enjoying, laying in the tall grass watching the fluff drift from the cottonwoods on summer afternoons or basking in the glow of the lights above the baseball diamonds on hot nights when the sound of a ball striking a wooden bat is best enjoyed.
As happens so often, the moment we left the apartment Duncan had a destination in mind, a place to lead me to, a moment to share. He slowed as we approached the ring of crabs and I stopped to admire a clump of purple pansies growing in a line along the edge of the maintenance road. Clear drops of water clung to the wrinkled, lion-faced petals, which clutched them back as tenderly and protectively. The sun dipped behind a cloud and the water turned silver and reflected the sky above. It took my breath away but Roo, who grows restless when he's on a mission, pulled me away with one short, sharp bark. After a few moments I relented and followed him into the small grove of purple-flowered trees where he sat suddenly and with purpose among the clover.
And then it happened. The sun peeked out and a breeze spilled down over the top of the hill and rushed over us like the slow cascade of a warm waterfall. The trees stirred, the boughs and branches rang a wooden chime and the purple petals took flight, gusting first up and then sifting down over us, radiant in the burst of sunlight, twisting and spinning in the air, a violet shower of sweet smelling snow flakes that dotted our heads, alighted on our shoulders and backs, danced around our feet. Duncan looked up at them, rolled onto his back to show them the softness of his belly, his long, pink tongue lolling out of his mouth while I reached into the air and let them fall onto my open palms where they gathered like wishes waiting to be wished.