Exploring country roads in lilac time

Lilac time is here now … These are the few evenings in a year when I can sit on the front steps in the evening and feel petals blow against my shoulder. The scent feels tangible … and telepathic. Lilacs have always had magic for me. They hold my attention. They play with time. They tell me these few days are not like anything else, and they pull me out to sit in the evening while the light moves imperceptibly into dusk.

Right now I find I’m looking for that kind feeling — something simple and close by that shakes me out of my thoughts. Storm clouds skim over the trails at Performance Space 21 and turn half the sky swirling dark and half vivid blue. The Lost Lamb Bakery in Stockbridge gives me an almond criossant with a generous filling of almond paste rich with vanilla.

They surprise me into remembering something glad and strange, sensory and living, like buds opening. This moment of the year seems to tell time by flowers. We’re half-past columbine and a quarter to wild azalea … the minute hand is on the yellow lady slippers Thom Smith once showed me years ago, on a trail where we heard a scarlet tanager. The wild viburnum should be blooming on the high paths on the dome and Lenox Mountain.

I want to see and breathe them as long as they’re here. The evenings are growing longer now, and it’s a good time to talk with someone in the quiet, with the sound of wind in the leaves.

This weekend …

Artists talk about their work at the Marble House, actors open the season at Shakesepare & Company and at Performance Space 21 in Chatham, N.Y., and the Metropolitan Opera comes to the Mahaiwe on the big screen, live in HD …

Events coming up …

Find more art and performance, outdoors and food in the BTW events calendar.

Pianist Chelsea Randall will perform live at the Foundry. Press photo courtesy of the theater
Jun 25 2022 @ 7:30 pm
New York pianist Chelsea Randall will give a recital of modern and contemporary Black composers with a spotlight on George Walker.
MaConnia Chesser stars in An Illiad at Shakespeare & Company. Press photo courtesy of the theater.
Jun 25 2022 @ 7:30 pm
MaConnia Chesser stars in the one-person show that transforms Homer’s epic poem into a riveting contemorary monologue.
Nima Rakshanifar and Henry Stram appear in 'Andy Warhol In Iran' at Barrington Stage Company. Press photo courtesy of BSC
Jun 25 2022 @ 7:30 pm
Barrington Stage presents a world premiere play by Brent Askari — in 1976, Andy Warhol travels to Tehran to take Polaroids of the Shah’s wife ...

By the Way Berkshires is a digital magazine exploring creative life and community — art and performance, food and the outdoors — and I’m writing it for you, with local voices, because I’ve gotten to know this rich part of the world as a writer and journalist, and I want to share it with you.

If you’d like to see the website grow, you can join me for a few dollars a month, enough for a cup of coffee and a cider doughnut. Members get access to extra stories and multimedia, itineraries a bookmark tool. Let me know what you're looking for, and we’ll explore together.

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