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They were here before us

They were here before us long ago: the Carline Thistle named for Charlemagne -- who used it to guard his army from the plague; Forsythia, come from China and once known as Golden Bell and Golden Rain; The Dandelion, so highly prized that ARabs and Egyptians knew it by some fifty other names and the Gentian, a holy plant called Steps of Christ that bordered his long path to Calvary. They were here yesterday and will be here tomorrow: the plants of the wilds that cross the ways of men, that see what they see, know what they know -- and bloom.