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Waiting for Spring

Journal entry: February 20, 2011

I feel the power of spring gathering. Beneath the crystal cloak of winter, forces are awakening, if not yet on the move. Soon they will arise to shatter the last cold shards of winter. I scribbled down a few of my impressions of this waiting period:

Wrapped in a sunbeam, a Cardinal perches boldly on a spruce tree in the place where angels sit – the red of his feathers vibrating against a blue sky. From this glorious place he sends forth a few bars of his spring song – testing his voice to be sure he’s ready for the arrival of spring and the mating season. I listen, hoping for more, but that is all for now. Like everything and everyone else, I must wait a little longer. . .

Beneath the hardened, grey snow of winter stirs the pulse of new life. Daffodil leaves are not deterred by lingering patches of snow, and push through in some places. However, these reassuring, sunny-faced flowers of spring are still weeks away. . .

The other day I saw my first chipmunk since last autumn. He scampered through a gentle shower of meltwater cascading off the rooftop and ran up the butterfly bush to the top of the low cement wall in my backyard. Once there, he turned towards me and paused. We stared at each other for such a long time, sleepy eyes regarding me as he basked in the warmth of sacred sunlight. Curiously, this enchantment between us relieved some of the weariness in my heart. After a while, the chipmunk ran off (ignoring the almonds I set out for him), probably to return to his den to wait a bit longer. Too much of the land was still in the hands of winter. . . 

The golden light of dawn that streams through the window has shifted its angle of entry. As the sun climbs, it casts a tangle of shadow branches that slide across the walls and drape themselves over furniture moving in a new, yet familiar trajectory. The arc of the sun rises higher, reclaiming dominance over the long darkness of winter nights – but at the unhurried pace of just a few minutes per day. . .

If nothing else, winter teaches us patience.

Reader Comments (2)

Again, well done!
It reads so easily, yet probably took a long time to write.
- DG

February 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDonald G

Yes, it took a very long time. Some days the words roll off the pen easily, other days I must chase them around with a net! Translating an impression is a challenge. An impression is a living thing, and as such it is continually evolving inside me, so the first draft of this was old and "not quite right" as soon as I wrote it. However, I kept at it, refusing to bail out on the experience. Something so simple sometimes requires much "cleaning", or shaving away thin layers of dullness. One thing I have learned in refining my writing is that to make a piece work the way it needs to, I must go back over it and evict vocabulary or sentences that sound a bit too pleased with themselves.

Thanks for your comment ;-)

February 23, 2011 | Registered CommenterMichael Gambino

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