Saturday, November 28, 2009


I am the Autumnal sun

Soy el sol Otoñal,
Mi raza se forjó con galernas de Otoño.
¿Cuándo hará brotar sus flores el hazel,
y la uva madurará bajo mi emparrado?

¿Cuándo la cosecha y la luna del cazador
tornarán mi medianoche en mediodía?
Estoy completamente agostado y amarillo,
y hasta el corazón maduro.
La bellota está cayendo en mis bosques
El invierno se esconde en mis humores
Y el crepitar de la hoja caída
es la música constante de mi pesadumbre,
Mi pesadumbre jovialmente teñida,
Mi liberación otoñal.

Henry David Thoreau

(Traducción Guillermo Ruiz)

Hamamelis virginiana L.

Witch hazel, American witch hazel

Hamamelidaceae (Witch-Hazel Family)

USDA Symbol: HAVI4

USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.

This small tree or tall shrub is often multi-trunked and usually grows10-15 ft. tall but can reach 35 ft. in height. The large, crooked, spreading branches form an irregular, open crown. The floral display of witch hazel is unique. Its fragrant, yellow flowers with strap-like, crumpled petals appear in the fall, persisting for some time after leaf drop. Lettuce-green, deciduous leaves maintain a rich consistency into fall when they turn brilliant gold. Bark is smooth and gray.

The aromatic extract of leaves, twigs, and bark is used in mildly astringent lotions and toilet water. A myth of witchcraft held that a forked branch of Witch-hazel could be used to locate underground water. The foliage and fruits slightly resemble those of the shrub hazel (Corylus). Upon drying, the contracting capsule can eject its small seed as far as 30 (9 m).

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