It’s the best part of spring, that brief period of time when life begins to reemerge from the bare branches and brown earth. The world is exploding almost visibly with life, and I hardly dare blink lest I miss something. Everywhere I look there are buds bursting open, leaves unfolding, new scenes unfolding and an unending number of discoveries to make.
Across the lake, that first cloudy mist of soft green is enveloping the poplars, contrasted stunningly against the deep evergreen of the pines.
There are the gardens to examine, where I eagerly check to see if my plants survived yet one more winter, greeting the ones who do like long-lost friends. The ones who were just planted last year and have just passed the big test of surviving their very first Minnesota winter create the most excitement. Sometimes, I’m disappointed (never mind, foxgloves, we’ll try again); other times I’m pleasantly surprised (hello, strawberries!).Then, there are the woodsy pilgrimages to make, traditions dating to my childhood, like going in search of the dainty lavender and white hepaticas that are so absolutely quintessential of a Minnesota spring.And, if I’m paying attention and watching my step as I go, there is almost always something new to discover. Something unexpected, like the strange forms of emerging horsetail at the edge of a gravel country road. Or a pair of sandhill cranes, flapping their half-graceful, half-ungainly way out of the maze of last year’s cornstalks. Or a fisher bounding across a lonely, narrow, backwoods road, stopping just long enough to glance back at us curiously.Beauty in the expected and familiar; beauty in the unexpected and unfamiliar. Truly,
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” (Ecclesiastes 3:11)
But I must say that I think this may be especially true in the spring.