Some things you can depend on, like spring and robins. I saw one this morning while I was eating breakfast. He was perched on top of the fence that runs east and west on the south side of the yard. He seemed to look around, probably trying to find out whether any of the three cats were in the vicinity. Once the coast was clear, he flew into the yard, passed the clumps of leafless quakies and out of sight. No matter what weather might emerge over the next few weeks, I took comfort that my pals, the robins, had returned to my yard and to Wyoming.
Later on, just before I trundled off to work, I rolled the trash can down our long driveway to the loop road. As I was walking back up, I commented to myself what a beautiful day it appeared. Instead of entering the garage, I sauntered across my front lawn, still moist from the remains of an early morning frost, and stood in front of the kidney, filled with greenery peeking through the dead flower and sedum stalks that I hadn’t cleared before last year’s sudden snow that had covered them up.
There in the midst of the stalks, tiny tuffins of green sedum peered up at me. They seemed a bit giddy, knowing they were alive. Next to them, a few tulips were making their way out of the ground. For a brief moment, I stared at these brave, courageous green plants, breaking through the tyranny of winter.
Soon I was off to work and day of meetings. In the afternoon, one of the deans at the College stopped by to visit with my assistant. They were discussing the snow that had suddenly appeared from almost nowhere. What, I thought! Was this an April Fool’s Day joke? I had just looked outside not long ago, and nothing appeared wintery in any way, except maybe for a few low gray clouds. But meetings and others tasks overtook my thoughts and stopped any glances outside. And now this!
I stood, stretched, parted my blinds, and stood, stunned at the amount of snow that had apparently fallen over the past 45 minutes to an hour. A good three inches of thick, wet snow had fallen during this time. My car, which I could see from my window, was covered with a white blanket of snow. I hadn’t brought in my coat or my boots. If it kept snowing for the next three hours, I knew I would be trudging through snow to the car, without boots, without a coat, without gloves, and without my hat, something I wasn’t looking forward to.
Now, later in the evening, I sit at the computer, safe now at home, snug in my old tan button up sweater and slippers. I look north out the window, thankful that it isn’t quite dark yet, and see the snow still falling, falling, falling. I still can see the old sedum stalks, poking out of five inches of the white stuff that has covered up any greenery that I reveled in this a.m. The entire lawn, in fact, looks like one giant field, now covered in snow. Gone is any semblance that spring might be oozing its way through winter. Even the north window is plastered halfway up with that thick, sticky snow.
But I remember back to this morning as I sat complacently at the breakfast table, eating a blueberry bagel, smothered with strawberry cream cheese, and spooning Post’s Honey Bunches of Oats with vanilla bunches, methodically into my mouth, while watching Mr. Robin, sitting atop the fence.
Ah, the snows may blanket the earth many times before true spring finally throws off the shackles of winter. But I know that spring is here for the robins have returned, and the green things are just biding their time while singing soft lullabies beneath the snow.