Desperately Seeking Spring

Snow in the shadows

Three days until Spring begins, and visible signs of its arrival are thin on the ground…Snow lingers in the shady, hidden places, icy winds howl. Daffodil foliage is half its normal height. The number of days over 40F can be counted on the fingers of one hand…

Birch tree

Which is not to say there are no signs…they’re just subtle.

The birds and animals know. Each evening I hear the whistling sky-dance of the woodcocks in the field next door as they launch themselves into their mating rituals. The Tom Turkeys are in full display each time we pass the flock on the way to school, proud tailfeathers spread in hopes of impressing the Ladies.

Look closely at the limbs of that birch tree:

Birch Cones

Each twig is tipped in a pollen-filled ‘cone’… Not as showy as a flower, but still a sign of Winter’s End.

The animals are all stirring, too. I’ve seen a pair of coyotes ranging about, looking to stake their claim on a bit of ground (they’ve been encouraged to seek elsewhere, I might add…) and the squirrels have momentarily ceased their assaults on the feeders to chase each other ’round the trees in hopes of pairing-off for the season.

wood azaela bud

There are subtle swellings in the buds of flowering trees and shrubs. Hard to notice, unless you really look…hard to miss, if you’re waiting and hoping. The best of the bunch is a grand, old Saucer Magnolia near Angel’s school…each day, the buds seem bigger and closer to bursting. Some morning soon, it will be a blowsy pink cloud…

Spring is late this year. Delayed. Overslept and missed the bus…but it’s coming.

First Snowdrops

We just may have to crawl around in the mud for a while to get a good look at it.


38 thoughts on “Desperately Seeking Spring

  1. Hmm. I can identify the objects in the first four photos, but what are those green spiky things next to the solar-powered white garden lamps?

    Gotta go. The White Witch will be coming by in her sleigh any moment, to bring me some more Turkish Delight.

    • Thought they’d never come…I was actually afraid that they’d frozen to death in our colder-than-normal winter! Providence and Points North still have tons of snow, too, but we’re clear now – knock on wood.
      Careful of that Witch – I hear she turns fauns into statues! (Can’t wait til the kiddoes are old enough for those books πŸ˜€ )

  2. Yes, we certainly are desperately seeking spring. But to get to my mud, I’d have to shovel the snow. πŸ™‚ We’re still buried under a ‘lot’ of snow. When I look out the window, it is ‘all’ white. So, I’ll be watching your posts and hoping we’ll be coming along behind you. Bring on the ‘green’ not just today but for several months please. πŸ™‚

  3. We had to wait a long, long time for spring last year. But when it did come there were so many flowers all at once, it was really beautiful… and appreciated that much more after the seemingly endless winter! I hope you get your spring soon, with lots of flowers, green shoots and not too much mud.

  4. I love how determined spring is. Even when it has to trudge on over and over after being bested by late frosts over and over, it perseveres and makes it through.

  5. It ‘s like with Windows at the beginning : Veuillez Patienter !
    Patience et longueur de temps
    In Paris, pollution since 1 week : free for bus and subway, and today only the cars with an impair number for immatriculation are authorized to circulate
    That is the world now….

  6. I can understand how you would be looking for signs and I am glad you can see them. We are often like that after summer, waiting for the leaves to start changing their colours, it is happening early here this year. After those couple of weeks of really really hot days, we had almost nothing. I hope spring gets there soon and your world will be full of colour again.

    • We’re all ready for Fall when it arrives, too…everyone needs a break after the summer’s activities. It’s below freezing again today, but the sun is shining so we all feel a little better πŸ™‚

  7. Love your ‘well, look, there are some signs’! photos . . . especially the magnolia bud one. Live within a park full of magnolia trees and when they blossom we know our spring has arrived. But since we get a sprinkling of snow lasting 5 minutes once every ten years and ‘freeze to death’ loudly complaining when we hit -2 C, perhaps I should very much shut up πŸ˜‰ !

    • It’s all relative…of course you feel colder at higher temperatures – they’re rare for you. Snow is still fun when it’s an Event, not a Lifestyle πŸ˜‰
      Do you have the evergreen type of magnolia, or the ones that drop their leaves in the fall? The evergreens don’t grow this far North, but I have fond memories of them from my Southern childhood…

      • Most are decidious Soulangiana and Yulan etc, but I have a miniature ‘grandiflora’ [summer magnolia: white rounded blossoms] in my own garden which stays beautiful throughout the year. I love the elegant small Yulan with its white tulip-shaped blossoms . . .

  8. Ah, my dear! You give me hope! My daffodils are still buried under the snow and ice…very unusual for this late in the year! The maple sap is hardly running, and I haven’t seen a skunk or a bear or bit of a budding tree. Even my fifth graders are begging for spring!

    • I was in Providence last week, and was surprised to see how much snow they still have on the ground…you must still be covered completely 😦
      You know it’s bad when even the 3- and 4-year-olds in the house say, “Snow? Not AGAIN!” Hope you’re not getting more tonight…

  9. Every year for St Joseph’s, I post a pic of my crocus in bloom. This year they’re still buried under snow. They’ll make a nice opening shot for Memorial Day, though. πŸ™‚
    Good to see your area is starting to show signs of Spring’s arrival. Winter’s departure is long overdue.

  10. Your words and photos dance together. And that I can tell you is a great acknowledgement!

    What is it that makes us desperately seek something? Even when we know it is but transitory. Like the season you speak of. Or the people who come into our lives. Is it about something inside us that seeks change always?


    • Thanks for your wonderful, thoughtful comment Shakti…I can’t speak for others, or other types of desperation, but I think this is a seeking for ‘normal’. The winter has been long and hard, and like hibernating animals we’re all seeking the sun and the warmth that our instinct tells us *should* be here already. It’s a soul-deep longing to have my hands back in the dirt, to begin the growing season anew, to have those first tender greens of spring on my plate. Not a search for a totally new experience (though some spend their lives chasing those), but the return of the Familiar and cherished…
      I’m also desperate to have my two small grandchildren back outside, instead of running through the house like a pack of wolves…or whatever today’s game might involve πŸ™‚

  11. I’m so happy that spring has found its way to you. Hopefully it will make its way north. We still have over a foot of snow on the ground but sooner or later it will melt. It is worse at our cottage in Maine where where we are forecasted to get more snow. 😦

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