Rainbows and fairy houses

Rhonda Silence

We normally don’t see rainbows in March in northeastern Minnesota. In fact, it is more likely that we’ll see snow through March than rain. I remember many, many Easters in April that had enough snow to allow decorating snow banks with leftover Easter Egg dye. I don’t think that is going to happen this year.

We’re used to seeing Northern Lights in March, not rainbows. But I like the idea of rainbows in March—especially for St. Patrick’s Day. It would be delightful if it rained this Saturday, March 17. It would be wonderful if it rained just enough to create the conditions for a rainbow to appear.

If the rain was just a drizzle and the sun cooperated and peeked through the clouds, we may see a rainbow on St. Patrick’s Day. If we do, we could search for the mystical pot of gold.

Now I know, there really is no such thing as a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. I know there is no magical leprechaun stashing his fortune somewhere just beyond the horizon. But it’s a fun thought. Whenever I see a rainbow I try to see where it ends, just in case it’s near enough that I could find the end.

But the end of the rainbow is a mirage. Like those shimmering puddles on a paved road when you’re walking on a hot summer day. When you get near them, they have moved farther down the road. You can never reach them.

That’s how it goes with the pot of gold, unless… Legend has it that if a leprechaun likes you, he will share his gold and his luck. I don’t know how a person can get a leprechaun, to like him or her—especially when you can’t even see the leprechaun.

Legend also has it that if you trap a leprechaun; he will be forced to give up his gold. That seems kind of mean. Besides, what would you do with a leprechaun once you had him? I don’t know that you can keep imaginary creatures like leprechauns in a hamster cage or goldfish bowl.

I could however, provide a nice little home in the fairy village in my yard. I have a hodge-podge of “fairy” houses. I didn’t put them away last fall as I should have and they are beginning to show through the snow.

One is actually a birdhouse, but it looks as if it could belong to the crooked man who had a crooked wife of nursery rhyme fame. It’s whimsical enough for an elvish creature, but the winter was hard on it and it is even more crooked than it once was.

The other fairy house is a sturdy cottage made of resin material, which looks quite realistic, down to its window shutters and thatched roof. If you were a tiny Irish being you might feel at home there.

Another fairy house is made of resin as well, but it has accents of bronze and three tiny fairy dancers already reside there, so that would probably not be suitable for a leprechaun.

Finally, I have another quirky, crooked, house, this one ceramic. Chuck bought it for me at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival and it fits perfectly at the base of the pine in my fairy garden. It seems like it would be a perfect spot for a leprechaun to visit.

I’m going to keep my eye on the garden this Saturday. I know, I won’t see a leprechaun, much less trap one. But I’m lucky nonetheless to have my little fairy village peeking through the snow. A perfect St. Patrick’s Day present.

May God grant you always...
A sunbeam to warm you,
A moonbeam to charm you,
A sheltering angel,
so nothing can harm you.

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