Originally published in Seasonal Guide, April 11, 2014
A slow awakening
Goodbye Winter, hello Spring
by Rob McCall
Spring is long around here. The sun begins driving its wedge between the cold and wintry days sometime in mid-March and that sets us all to dreaming about Spring, but the lilacs in the door-yards and the apples in the ancient orchards don’t start coming into bloom until a good way into May. That’s a long time to wait for the full effulgence of the season to warm us enough to let the woodstove cool down for a while. And the worst of it is, Winter can change its mind and come charging back in and lock us in its glacial grip again up until about Mother’s Day, just to remind us who’s in charge in this boreal clime.
Still, if anything can make an oldster feel young again, it is Spring. We watch with delight as the shackles of Winter fall one by one. First the sap starts to rise in the maples. Then the ice breaks up in the harbors and on a full moon tide simply disappears overnight, replaced by diamond-studded blue water. Then, the thin green spikes of crocuses push up and carpets of blue scilla spread over the damp and frosty ground. Then the blue jays and the blackbirds hold their raucous reunions, while the turkey vultures hang lazily on uplifted wings and the sun warms the South slope of Awanadjo as the ancients called Blue Hill Mountain.
Soon enough even the soul soured by a bitter Winter feels the sap rising in his veins, feels colors reappearing in his heart, and feels his spirit soaring again like the ospreys returning to their nests along the shore. Then all the forces of Nature renewed permeate the coldest corners within and without and we sing exuberantly with the blue jays on the budding branch; we shout for joy with the pileated woodpeckers in the forest; we yodel with the ravens on the mountain, and we whistle with the eagles gyring high above. And even if it’s only once a year, we breathe a fervent prayer of thanks, for Spring.
Now, where did we put the bug-dope?