Spring is icumen in.
Nearly all the snow is gone. Owain's Fort Vengeance finally melted this afternoon, unmarked even by damp mud. A broad drift three feet high still lurks coolly under the living room window, where it's shady most of the day. Some fugitive white spots lurk at the base of trees, biding time in tall shadows.
My little apple tree, the scores of birches and maples, the numberless verticals of the forest stretching out to the horizon on three sizes of our land, have started fuzzing out nubs for leaves. Such hazardous stabs into the future they are, brave little gestures of hopeless trust that winter has been suspended.
The great mud of April is gone, and the earth merely satisfied with a good amount of water. Our driveway is spastic with ruts, only somewhat mitigated by my digging and rock placement. The little ponds behind our house are already stocked with splashing frogs, stalked by canny cats who pause to observe sadistically from rock perches.
Today insects made appearances: gnat, ants, spiders. Winter is a vast death to bugs, so spring resumes the ancient empire of our predecessors. The cats glory in plenty of chases and dismemberments; chickens strut over dirt and grass, pecking out bounty from a target-rich environment, clucking their triumph.
I've started sawing and stacking deadfall wood against winter... which is really just six months off. Today winter feels like an immense slab of white, a laminate installation I can sense in the muscle memory of my back and shoulders, a kind of augmented reality layer just this side of manifesting, waiting only a silent toggle.