Tuesday, March 20, 2012

SOLS #20: Spring's Never-Ending Chorus

"Now, who knows if any of this is usable material?  There's no way to tell until you've got it all down, and then there might just be one sentence or one character or one theme that you end up using.  But you get it all down.  You just write."  Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird.  That's my plan for today - a spring celebration. 

I often wonder why I live in Ohio.  As I travel the United States and see the beautiful mountains, the glorious oceans, the winding rivers, the rolling hills, the blue skies, I wonder why I live in a place where the skies are gray and the land is flat.  I wonder why I live in a place where the cold winters seem to go on forever.  Where, in the long months of winter, temperatures rarely get above freezing and snow has a way of slowing things down.

Perhaps on days like today I start to understand.  This evening I came home to sit on my back patio.  It is unseasonably warm for this time of year.  In these days one can visibly see the transition from winter to spring.  The trees with their bare limbs begin to show signs of life.  The weeping cherry in our front yard has flowers wrapped tightly waiting to burst when the time is right.  The white flowers of the dogwood have opened as one of the first hopeful signs that we have placed winter firmly behind us.

The brown grass of winter is gradually being overtaken by the green grass of warmer days.  The dried leaves of fall can be found entwined in flowerbeds where they have kept the fragile contents warm through the long cold months.  The daffodils begin to burst open and the hyacinths begin to flower.  The tulips are peeking above the ground now to let us know that they are next in the display of spring fireworks.

The birds chase each other from tree to tree around our backyard.  There's a constant chatter in the air as animals, birds, and insects begin to appear again.  I've heard the woodpecker busy in the woods nearby.  I've seen the heron standing like a statue in the shallow water that collects this time of year in our far backyard.  I've heard the cardinals calling to each other as they move from tree to tree.  Everyone joins in a never-ending chorus that celebrates the coming of spring.

I sit here on my patio with the sun slowly sinking behind the field with its rows of dried corn stalk still left from the harvest of the previous fall.   I watch the days slowly slip from winter to spring.  Perhaps this is why I live in Ohio.  I've learned to mark time by the changes I see around me as the seasons pass.  I know the farmer will soon be busy plowing the field to plant new crops.  As we close the door on winter, and step carefully into spring, I know the sun will shine a little more.  There will be many more days for me to sit on my patio and enjoy the beauty that surrounds me.


  1. Isn't it just beautiful! I know what you mean...when we traveled to California this summer, I was amazed at the beauty of our country. There were so many places that I said to Keith, "I could live here." But home brings us to those we love and times like tonight make living in Ohio all worthwhile. We have to remember these days the next time we have a streak of gray days.

  2. I loved your conclusion. Thanks for bringing me to Ohio tonight.

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  4. Love this - I have similar feelings in Illinois at times. I love the distinct seasons and watching the plants wake up again.

  5. I love the vision of you on your patio since I know you spend so much time there. I'm glad to hear how nice it's been back home. Hope it continues to last.

    The one sound I might have to disagree with you about -- the woodpecker. I wish they would keep their sound in the woods near our house. Right before we left, one took up residence on the side of our house... again!

    I hope you can enjoy your patio again today!


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