Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Spring, Really

A year and an hour or so ago, June, Mom and Morgan and I found ourselves in Grandma's room waiting- somewhat irreverently- for Grandma to take her last breath. I remember thinking as I lay curled up against her back that it was somehow fitting for the last sound she should hear to be our laughter. We were, of course, also in tears. But that's the way life should be.

And after everybody said goodbye and Dale drove the Suburban away, we took our red-eyed, weary selves to June's to play with newborn puppies. Carrie brought the girls by and Abbie's hair smelled like wild spring wind when she squeezed my waist her hardest and told me she was "so, so sorry," and Britan's cheeks were brilliantly sunburned.

I can finally believe it's spring. Despite lingering banks of dingy snow, despite the occasional unwelcome flurry, despite chilly nights. Last week up the river we saw the bluest bluebird I have ever seen, a brilliant chalky blue the unnatural color of a plastic toy. We saw mallards and hens, a fox slinking down into a culvert, red winged blackbirds sniping at each other over seeds. We heard a trilling meadowlark somewhere just off the road. At lunch I saw the fattest robin I have ever seen hopping across my lawn, dull scarlet breast protruding out over the grass so far I thought he was going to fall flat on his face.

Every year I think all these long-dormant things are new and extreme: the brightest, the biggest, the best. This year’s ravens and magpies the most vivid, loud and large, this year’s grass the most vibrant. And no matter how vigilant I am it always comes as a surprise to find these things in the world again come May.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


last year a pair of blue birds brought their 6 babies into our backyard to learn how to fly. they came every day for a couple weeks. this year i have see a lot (or maybe the same over and over) in my yard. i think they are looking for nesting sites! i hope so! i'll have to get my camera ready for a photo op.

May 4, 2006 at 7:53 PM  

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