They need the cold, and the dark.
It’s a yearly ritual. Hope in darkness, confidence that this year, as every year, the days will turn after the solstice, the early evenings will lengthen, just a little, each day, creeping up by minutes.
Down there, we buried them in rich dark soil, in the blue bowl that was my grandmother’s, the terracotta trough my mother brought from Italy, the painted pots from Eastern Europe that I somehow brought home unbroken.
And before winter is over, their green shoots will come, and we’ll bring them upstairs. Daffodils. Hyacinths. Spring. Colour. Perfume; hope.