Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Signs of Spring - Tara la la la

O the green things growing, the green things growing,
The faint sweet smell of the green things growing!
I should like to live, whether I smile or
Just to watch the happy life of my green things growing.
- Dinah Maria Mulock Craik

The Forsythia from the Lost Garden that we brought home and nurtured in the bathtub - blooming its little heart out and brightening up the living room, - and bathroom....

The sap rising in the peach orchards, and in the willows, turning the trees into
candle flames which almost rival the colours of fall.

A poor misguided farmer who has not yet learned the ways of the valley, - that you leave your prunings and cleared trees to dry for at least six months, so that when you do put fire to tinder it results in a good clean flame, rather than smoke which travels the length and breadth of the valley.

And the river, starting its run-off slowly while the ice clings to the banks in four foot sheets.

In the fields the number of small cavorting calves increases day by day, and up north at Meadowranch the new lambs start to arrive - and the pictures of them cause a great swell of nostalgia. Ah, for days gone by....

Each day a few more bulbs escape the earth, tentatively, and I see the delphinium, the peonies and the Shasta daisies pushing up their first shoots of tender green.

The poplar trees have that unmistakable colour which promises swelling leaf buds - there are pussy willows down in the yard below us, and catkins hang on the hazelnut trees in the Lost Garden.

In the morning the chittering and chattering of small birds is as pleasing to the ear as their most melodious songs. Occasionally great flocks of starlings gather in the apple trees, and the little dog, the Straight Guy, is startled by the sound of a farmer's scare gun which sends the starlings scattering and starts him barking.

The clouds are benign, the sky is blue, and although the wind is sometimes bitter, most times it is mild and wafts the fragrances of spring. We are not yet finished with March - not even half way through. The month has brought surprises before, and nobody is relaxing into Spring, - just enjoying what comes, day by day.