The forest floor bleak, choked with old leaves, winter wet. Against the evidence, buds on the wild dogwoods glisten, listen for a signal, lining up for bloom-time—when to burst and who'll be first? Every year, it's all according to weather, the wait for the heat-throb, wind fresh through the naked birch trunks longing to get green. The pressure's on, like listening for a starter pistol, finger on the trigger.
Spring is wound tight enough to let go any minute. Overarching the ravine, the cedars start their annual scatter of yellow sexual dust for the next generation. The clematis resists her tedium of cold and brown, cancels her winter sleep with a vertical thrust up the trellis, like a slow shooting star.
How can we help but hope, sprouts urged to fulfill a kind of promise— a covenant with the world that in unfolding, leaf tips flaring up and out, woody hearts pregnant with bloom and blessing, we will drink rain, light, heat for our emerald living. We face the sun full on—its lavish encouragement for cold to lift, shift, and move away. Holding on, ready for that shiver, a sliver of thrill like a jade thread through a labyrinth, when within us something fresh and green explodes.
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