Monday, March 11, 2013

March: Stealing Spring from the Jaws of Death

Winter, for a minute, stole spring's coming; freezing the lazy grass sudden-stopped in its swaying, now formed in erect swords of ice; dusting golden straw with the paleness of death. Hanging in stillness, the birds held their breath and waited to exhale the notes that would herald the warming joy of things stirring deep beneath the earth. The song buzzed within their throats.

I also waited, forced by tyrannical lists to action, covered in sweaters—aching under barometric pressure, which kept rising and falling like the regimes of tiny, fleeting men, living out their negligible lives in the time it takes to SNAP.

Business was done while frost lingered on the grass and yellow crocuses poked out their faces in the sugaring of snow. Inside, we swept and mopped, just as if the world wasn't changing its mind and changing it back again, a titanic two year-old into which I must soon set my seeds.

The cat hid underneath the couch, afraid of being placed into the cold. Ducks padded carelessly and slept upon the ice while chickens hid inside their coop, afraid to set their tender, forked feet onto the frost upon the earth.

Southward trees trying to flower were, perhaps, crushed in their efforts and summer will bring us the dearth of their fruit. Perhaps.

But March, like an old friend, holds no surprises for me. We will freeze in winter jackets, cast them off and stand in t-shirts in the 45 degree blaze that feels like summer, praising God in the highest, singing Hallelujah, our feet half-sunk into the mud. Snow will fall again and we will photograph tulips as they stand tall against assault.

For what is spring without winter? Just the unearned laughter of the neophyte who has known no hardship, dressed in blossoms never threatened by the chill.

We, in the mountains, steal spring from the jaws of death, and it lasts half a moment before summer rises and crushes it with its blaze. The blossoms we wear are dear as gems.

Spring, in fact, may never come again, and so we beat our fists on snowfalls and looks for robins in the March landscape—barren, full of skeletons, and promising of hope.


  1. Perhaps I should know this, but do you ever write any poetry, Lisa? If you don't,you should give it a try, because you do have a flare for figures of speech and the kind of multi-layered suggestiveness that true poetry requires.

    1. Hardly ever. I tend to do better with the form of prose than poetry, but I like to inject a lot of poetry into my prose, if you know what I mean? Thanks for the compliment.

  2. The other day while I was getting ready for work, Hubby shouted for me from downstairs. The sound of his voice was urgent, as though there were some kind of emergency. When I came running, he announced: "The sun is shining!" That's the kind of March we've had here. We've been pretty sure the sun is broken entirely. Looking forward to the blossoms and warmth and happy to have your wonderful words to read in the meantime.


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