it is elusive, this season that pulls and tugs on us, tells us it’s time to shed the woolen winter cloak, the pounds that have crept onto our laps, like children, who need to be nestled.
i’ve known for a while that it’s out there, teasing, taunting. i heard it in the birdsong one morning, as the snow was tumbling down. i laughed out loud, i did, the foolery of weather. thinking it can masquerade the turn of earth, the basking of our overpopulated island in the face of sun.
i can see it, too, in the white-blue light of march, beginning. i see it streaking in the windows, spilling on a bookshelf, shouting, “i am not the season you think i am.”
oh, never mind the ice, the snow.
it is out there, springtime is. it is contracting, deep beneath the icy-crusted soil, way beyond the stars where time ticks on, regardless of the swirling winds and piled-high precipitation.
the universe, yes, is deep in labor. spring is birthing, season churns from page to page. any week now, we’ll see the crowning of the springtime’s messy head, pushing through the cracks of winter finally stepping down, relenting.
if you look, hard enough, you can see it now.
on the tips of magnolia branches, where the velvet buds are clasped, in chilly prayer, awaiting one swift warm wind, and then, kapow, the whole of it, spring unbridled, will burst before our eyes.
you can spot it, if you watch the sparrows.
the ones i call my own are flitting in and out, already, of the little hole above my door, the one they call their home. the stoop is dumped with all the detritus of last year’s nesting fashion. this year, they seem to have a silken thread of royal blue hanging at their doorway.
the never-ending labors of the sparrows tickle me to no end. they chatter just outside my window, making quite a fuss, as she tells him, perhaps, to ditch the blue, go for something, hmm, a little softer on the eye.
i was in the woods the other day. squishing at every step. i was searching for those bravest wisps of woodsy carpet, the snowdrops, or the lime-green tight-wound clocksprings of the fiddlehead, a fern whose neck, perhaps, might be feeling pinched from all the hunching in a ball, deep beneath the loamy dappled floor, where all the winter’s work is done in dark seclusion.
there was not a tender shoot of promise to be found.
which made me think, of course. made me think how so much of life is just beyond our senses. but does that make it one breath less real, or only serve to exercise that muscle called Believing?
we can’t hear the words of those we’ve loved and lost, but does that mean they are no longer pulsing through our every blessed hour? we can’t see the unfolding of the dream we’re hoping for, but how do we know when the one who’ll make it happen is reaching for the telephone, or lining up the pieces to make the chessboard capture?
what if we learn–as the spinning of the earth and sun tries to teach, again and again–to trust that which we cannot see or hear? not yet, at least.
what if we take our cues in subtle ways–change of light, the lilt in cardinal’s morning song, barest wisp of green poking through the sodden gritty soil–and succumb to tug and pull of time?
what if, even when the cold winds blow in march, we believe that spring soon will be delivered?
it is, again, all about that thing called faith.
do we stalk the woods in search of spring, and walk out empty-hearted, or do we strip off our mittens, push back our hoods, and let the vernal-tipping sunlight sink deep into our marrow?
do you believe it’s coming? what signs have stirred you into knowing something fine is just around the corner? are you going batty? is the seasonal affective disorder dragging you deep down into the muck of the winter that will not take the hint, pack its bags and leave?