Lilacs collage

Our backyard lilacs


The lilac is a lovely ornamental flower that you find in abundance in gardens, parks and forests in Canada. Whitish pink with a bit of purple, I find it the most attractive and sweet-smelling of Canadian flowers.

Unfortunately lilacs last only a month. They appear in early summer, around the first of May, just before many of the roses and other summer flowers come into bloom, and they are gone by the thirty-first.

It is just unfortunate that the lilac is called Syringa Vulgaris. It sounds vulgar, to a guy with a one-track mind, like me. First of all, why the fookin’ hell does anything have to have a Latin name? When are we going to just call a rose a rose, for C’s sakes?

And on top of that, if you got a talking smartass lilac like I do in my backyard, it can drive you nuts. His name is Sy. The other day, I remember it was May Day,  I was up early and had happened to stroll out onto our backyard patio and there he was, starting the day with a short speech……


Bonjour, fellow lilac-ipoos! Congratulations on budding and blossoming into this world. Today we embark on our month long lifespan, when we can fill that Bengali’s backyard with our sweet aroma, all we want. God knows that, with his kind of flatulence, he will need it.


That’s me, Sy Vulgaris. Now, don’t you go callin’ me pretty. I’m a guy.


Yeah, so long as we do it in the next thirty days, we can achieve anything. Anything is possible as long as you don’t put off for next month what you can do taday. (You need ta do it this month, you really do). Take Miley for instance. You dunno Miley? Why she’s the lilac who thinks that electric pole she tries ta cuddle with, is her lover. Miley? Where the hell are you? What? Oh, Miley’s dead, she was born preemachorely and grew up last month, I forgot.


That’s Miley and her sisters when they were still young, with their ‘lectric pole. RIP.


Don’t waste your youth, my friends. Look at us, so young and full of promise. It seems like we have all the time in the world. But before you know it, it’s gonna be May the 15th and you’ll all be in your golden days, wondering ‘where did my youth go?’

Oops, it is May the 17th taday, we are already middle-aged. I hope that Bengali has a pension plan for us. But don’t depend upon him. Start saving now. Put aside a few doo drops so you’ll have sumpn ta fall back on later in the month.

Don’t be like my Uncle Horace and Aunt Augusta over there. They are already shrivelled and brown. Diversify your portfolio. Remember, dew doesn’t last and it may never rain. So, if the neighbor’s lab comes over and pees on you, let it go, don’t wrinkle up your stamens. What’s wrong with a bit more ammonia, huh?


Uncle Horace and Aunt Augusta, still proud and tall


What day is it? Twennie-fifth. Now, where was I? Oh yeah, I was talkin’ about time. The world, fellow lilacs, is a different place now, not the way it used to be. I remember when we were kids last week. The values of May the 15th are long gone now. Remember, learn from us, the generation that’s three days ahead of you. Listen to what Burt has ta say, always. Burt is old. Burt is wise. Burt? Where did Burt go? What? Oh, the Bengali trimmed his branch yesterday, did he? Sigh.

Ouch, I can hardly bend my filaments and my ovary aches. Look at me, first they name me ‘vulgaris’ and then I am male and still they call my richard ‘ovary’. But heck, what does it matter now? There are just five days left for me ta die and I haven’t even been pollinated. The bees have been so lazy, they don’t realize we need sex too and we need it real quick.

Maybe a sly wind will blow me over to that dandelion there.

I can tickle her stigma with my anther.

Her name isn’t Polly Nately for nuthin’.


Meet Polly Nately. She’s a bit scruffy, like a waif, but she’ll have ta do, I’m so horny right now. It’s already the 30th, I got just two days to scre….ummm…pollinate her.