Saturday, May 17, 2008

Blossom Spring

To her fair works did Nature link
The human soul that through me ran;
And much it grieved my heart to think
What Man has made of Man.

Through primrose tufts, in that sweet bower,
The periwinkle trailed its wreaths;
And 'tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.

The birds around me hopped and played,
Their thoughts I cannot measure -
But the least motion which they made
It seemed a thrill of pleasure.

The budding twigs spread out their fan
To catch the breezy air;
And I must think, do all I can,
That there was pleasure there.
(from Written in Early Spring by William Wordsworth)

Today as we skirted the lake and turned south into Lilley Gulch, where the willows have filled out nicely and the brook is running clear and steady, I realized four seasons are not enough. There is a time, an in-between period, when Spring is not just Spring but Summer also, and, as we've experienced this past week on the edge of the flowering and vibrant Rockies, Winter, too. The blossoms in the trees have faded and fallen, but the grass, freshly cut and fragrant, is thick and a kind of green that will not last long. The warm, left-over days of Summer that have bled into Autumn have been named Indian Summer so why shouldn't these bright days with perfect temperatures and cool breezes not have a name? Indian Spring, maybe? Or Blossom Spring? These days are unique, caught as they are between the rain and damp of April, and the searing heat that browns and dries the world in June and July. This is the time when the trees flower and rain petals on the earth, when the wind is still strong enough to hold a kite, but not cold or boisterous. The Russian Olives along the shores of the lake and the bank of the stream are beginning to bloom and it will only be a matter of weeks before their glorious, lemon-buttery sweetness fills the air and is carried across the fields on the breeze. The still-budding trees are just learning to cast shadows as they practice the art of making cool, gray shade. This is when baby rabbits, prairie dogs and foxes emerge from their nesting spots and venture out into the grass, ears pert and big, eyes as wide as the world they're seeing for the first time.

And each day we walk, Duncan and I stumble upon something new––splashing our feet in the creek, gazing for long moments at the ants and their big shadows as they rush across the cement and into the wilds of the grass, marveling at the jungle-like Sumac that springs up along fence lines. We have no choice but to stop and savor the bounty that has exploded into our world, searing our senses with tranquility and the joy of our most pleasant and vivid flying dreams.

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