May 28, 1854

in Thoreau’s Journal:

The huckleberries, excepting the late, are now generally in blossom, their rich clear red contrasting with the light-green leaves; frequented by honey-bees, full of promise for the summer. One of the great crops of the year. The blossom of the Vaccinium vacillans is larger and paler, but higher-colored on one side and more transparent (?), less concealed by leaves. These are the blossoms of the Vaccinieae, or Whortleberry Family, which affords so large a proportion of our berries. The crop of oranges, lemons, nuts, and raisins, and figs, quinces, etc., etc., not to mention tobacco and the like, is of no importance to us compared with these. The berry-promising flower of the Vaccinieae.  This crop grows wild all over the country ––wholesome, bountiful, and free, ––a real ambrosia….

Finding the low blackberry nearly open, I looked long and at last, where the vine ran over a rock on the south hillside, the reflected heat had caused it [to] open fully its large white blossoms. In such places, apparently yesterday…

It would be worth the while to ask ourselves weekly, Is our life innocent enough? Do we live inhumanely, toward man or beast in thought or act?  To be serene and successful we must be at one with the universe. The least conscious and needless injury inflicted on any creature is to its extent a suicide.  What peace –– or life –– can a murderer have?