Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Winter Breaks Up

We are affected like the earth,
and yield to the elemental tenderness;
winter breaks up within us;
the frost is coming out of me,
and I am heaved like the road;
accumulated masses of ice and snow dissolve,
and thoughts like a freshet pour down unwonted channels.

HDT Journal, March 21, 1853

Time marches on.
March has come -- and gone -- being not much more than a repeat of February.

Oh, it’s the month of my birth-day, and Easter -- days to observe with thoughts of rebirth and renewal ... but the outdoors doesn’t seem to be on the same calendar page as our hearts are.

I rejoice at the ever-lengthening daylight – but man, it’s still freezin' !

One day after the First Day of Spring, we got a few more inches of snow.
I no longer consider “playing” in it. 

My spirit (and skin) begin to chafe at the necessity of wearing longjohns for any outdoor activities.
The river thaws - then re-freezes - several times. On my walks along the Hudson River, wind is chilling me, but it is also breaking up the ice into bite-size pieces.

As April began, wan sunshine alternated with snow flurries.
It’s the breeziest Spring I can ever remember.
The patient plants hold back, despite our longing to see them.

The birds, being more mobile, are more adventurous, and appear just in time to boost our spirits.

What little snow cover there was seems to erode, more than melt.
The ground it reveals is covered with the dry brown crunchiness of old leaves.

Dauntless friends gather to walk about in the woods. We paw at the ground like deer, hoping to turn up something green.
These are the days when many a Lichenist is made.

There are other types of reminders -- and omens -- of Spring

But lo ! one day of warmth, then a few more with steady rain, and the world transforms.
You walk more relaxed, your feet making contact with the softening earth again.

Here and there, the search for green life is rewarded.

Familiar faces now return. 


  1. The bluebird photo is beautiful.

  2. Great post! Lovely shot of the bluebird!!

  3. thanks to both of you for still checking on my blog despite my recent lack of posts -
    waiting for more warmth until my first paddle of the year (meanwhile doing so vicariously with you Al)-
    and it's only a matter of time before the THRUSHES appear, right Catharus?