Usual Miracles

It happens every year of course, but it’s still fairly amazing when the lawn goes from frozen white to flowy green, and the trees from bare fingers to fluffy gloves, in so short a time. I start seeds indoors in March in perfect confidence that this will happen, and then it does, and I’m amazed all over again. This is an important part of why I love having four seasons – the sheer strangeness of it, for all its familiarity. It’s a cliche and a revelation all at once. When I lived in California and missed the seasons, people would say, oh but you can drive from lawn to snow and back again here all in one day. This completely missed the point. Going somewhere else and finding it different is hardly a surprize. Waking up to it in your own yard is.

Once the trees that bloom on bare branches have strewn their pink and white in profligate manner for a couple of weeks, it’s time for new leaves, on them as well as on the other trees. The bright bunchiness of new leaves can make the trees look full of yellow flowers, and makes me think of some lines by Robert Frost: “Nature’s first green is gold/ Her hardest hue to hold.” But as he goes on to sound a cautionary note about the passage of time and I am not in such a mood, I won’t quote the whole poem. Frost is the perfect name if you’re going to write a cautionary poem about spring. You can find it here, if you are in that mood:

and page down a bit.

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