Snow-devils spin their spritely dervish-dance, winds rage across the suddenly-winter landscape, snow and sleet pelt the window-panes, brown leaves skitter helplessly across rapidly shifting snow-dunes to fly up against tree-boles plastered in wind-blown whiteness. Branches bend and break, shedding the weak or old. Whole trees bow deeply down in obeisance to the power of the arctic Winter-king as we are all reminded of his bitter-cold might (just in case we had forgotten). The small-birds are the only ones to brazenly venture forth. All other creatures (us included) hunker down to wait out the snowy onslaught, huddled closely together in primeval awe (and possibly raw, unutterable fear) of the incredible power of our sometimes still-wild world. Maybe this is a good thing, to be reminded of how really small we are in the scale of the universe.
Crazy month — Crazy, indeed…just when we all thought the trend was toward Spring — the days are noticeably longer, more and more migrating birds have returned ready to mate; numerous small plants, shrubs and trees had started to poke up their green shoots or branches to bud, but Nature evidently runs on its own cycle. Just because we mark time with our silly calendars and make exhaustive notes of the “signs of spring,” the earth is not constrained in any fashion. It is probably not concerned with us. That may deeply disturb many people who have been raised to think how powerful we are, that the earth somehow revolves around our tiny little selves. On top of all that, climate-change is real and is contributing greatly already to drastic changes that we (and the earth) are experiencing. That being said, and even taking into account what an (obviously) crazy month March can be, Spring is still “just around the corner” (exactly which corner, I don’t know). I can see the effect that the higher sun-angle adds to the longer days on our recent white “blizzard-gift,” encouraging more — and more rapid — melting than we would experience in the shorter days of mid-winter, but we may still have snow left on the ground on the first day of Spring, Sunday, March 20. Days like these — like our devastating Ice Storm of February 2022 with all of us at the mercy of the elements, serve to remind us of things that we’d rather forget, but never should. Events like this ice-storm should serve to remind us to try to be prepared for whatever life/nature throws our way.
Let’s try to enjoy this late-winter landscape, but please be safe in doing so. I also suggest that we try to be extra-considerate of each other in this time. Please drive, snowshoe, ski or walk in a mindful fashion, being aware of others — and the earth — around us.