Spring wrestles with winter now, a warm day here, a cold one there. We’re as likely to have sunshine and gentle breezes as we are to have blinding snow, freezing rain, and clouds. No longer pitch black skies when the alarm goes off, now we have a sleepy glow that gets a little brighter each day. It’s food for the soul of the winter-weary northerner.
The snow is changing, too. Huge piles collected as we try to manage daily life shrink dramatically in a single day. Roofs are clear now — at least until it snows again tomorrow. The white blanket slides away from the ground to reveal wet and tired grass, ready to come alive.
One of my favorite things in this transition is a simple scientific occurrence. A late-falling leaf lands on the blanket of snow. As spring days come, the sun warms that dark leaf and it sinks down into the snow in a perfect cutout of its own shape. Nature’s art: simple, clean, and always fascinating. I remain grateful to be touched by that beauty, to welcome it as a brief offering from the surrounding trees and springtime sun — one of my touchstones for each trip through the calendar.
(c) 2018, J. Cools