April 29, 2007
Talkin' Sunshine Blues
As I walked through my woods this morning, I could see the results of the heavy, wet snow we had just a few weeks ago. In the grove of scotch pines, tops of trees snapped off, some of them crashing to the ground while others dangle precariously high above my head, the branches and broken trunks silhouetted against sky. I wore my tall rubber boots as I splashed through muddy puddles filled with dead leaves and broken branches.
I could see spring creeping through the woods. Little green leaves are unfolding on honeysuckle branches and wild raspberry, sedges are growing up from the mud, and the leaves of mayflowers are opening in patches. The nice thing about the lack of thick foliage in early spring is that I can see where I am going in the woods. It was a good day to walk my boundaries: I could spot old fence posts, bits of barbed wire embedded in tree trunks, surveyor's ribbons, and an iron pipe that is usually hidden beneath vegetation.
The warm air and sunshine made it impossible to spend any time indoors. Who can grade papers when the world is filled with new mud? When I returned from my morning walk, I tackled the dead plants in my gardens, pulling up dead stalks and piling them into the compost pile. Then my husband joined me for an afternoon walk at Pretty Colour Lakes, where the water was shining green blue. At the far end of the lake, we saw a man with white hair fishing by himself; he turned out to be Outdoor Girl's father, a man I've known since second grade. We stopped and chatted, of course, catching up on family news, and then he returned to his peaceful casting.
Late in the afternoon, I joined Shaggy Hair Boy and With-a-Why for a walk in our own woods. Well, not so much a walk as a running and leaping over mud puddles. They were happy to discover all the newly fallen trees, which shifted the positions of many of the thick wild grape vines. Shaggy Hair was determined to find a vine that would support his weight so he could dramatically swing over some of the big puddles, screaming as he did so. With-a-Why followed his lead, of course, and soon they were both soaked in muddy water. Their sneakers squished noisily as we followed a trail back to the house, a sound I have always associated with spring.
Posted by jo(e)