Words and Photos by Rebecca T. Dickinson
According to legend, spring is the season to fall in love. Everything blooms and babies are born.
In the spring of 2007, I remember thinking every animal was on schedule with the births of their babies. A duck, followed by her ducklings, crossed a walking path in April and early May. Baby rabbits hopped close to a tree or their mothers. Ah, spring the season of love.
At least spring is sometimes a season in which some writers let their characters fall in love. When Elizabeth Bennet realizes her feelings for Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice, the season is spring.
Do not let the spring and its legends of romance and in literature fool you.
Last week felt like spring with temperatures in the upper sixties and low seventies. Flowers started to bloom in some places. They do not have a time clock to tell them: It’s still winter.
Strange thoughts occur to me when I’m outside. My mind wonders everywhere. No fence surrounds the loose, inner-wonders of my brain. I enjoy thinking about how characters’ relationships form and friendships in my stories and other books.
From where did the idea of spring as the season to fall in love originate? Is it from the great writers, or does it stem from the fact so many beautiful things happen in the season—even in a winter that pretends it’s a temporary time for growth?
In a book as dark as The Detroit Electric Scheme: A Mystery by D.E. Johnson, a great—but dark—book, Will Anderson remembers falling in love with his former fiancé.
“Five years had passed since we fell in love. Though we had been seventeen, impossibly young, our love was destined, it seemed. But it was gone in an instant, an instant that destroyed both of our lives” (The Detroit Electric Scheme, p. 86).
A Tangled Mess
Realities of love in relationships can create a dark or tangled jungle. If characters always reflected the married life of Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet, a story or life would become boring. Not everyone wants the opposite end with separated fiancés, Will Anderson and Elizabeth Hume.
Relationships with depth, and often loss, attract my pen. It wants to scribble beyond the bright colors spring offers. In Sons of the Edisto, my main character, Owen Alston, struggles to understand what he feels for Aurelia Jean. She, however, is ready at one point to tell him she loves him. It is not the first thing on his mind.
Sometimes Love is …
An autumn night throwing a football with a college sweetheart.
Looking at stars and how much larger they are in an open, Georgia sky.
An hour of listening to Garth Brooks and Alabama in the car before you tell your boyfriend you want something else.
The understanding a boy has a girlfriend, who yells just as loud as all the other boys at a South Carolina football game.
Learning the art of how to say goodbye;
the knowledge to know when to let go;
and the heart’s secret that some loves last without words, rings, or ever seeing the other again.