Vicky’s Birches have new leaves. Just how did that happen? A moment ago it was winter and now spring’s burst wide open. I suppose, meteorologically, it’s actually still winter. But my senses don’t lie. No, here in our little town, the seasons have changed. Spring is here.
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Cherries and asparagus always meet at a certain time in spring and a particular market in San Rafael, California. As if in a May-December romance, the asparagus is on the way out while the cherries are on the way in. They sit adjacent to one another among a sea of produce stands. Their rendezvous is but a short one and lasts only a week or two. The the asparagus quickly disappears along with the people who sell it. The cherries are left to fend for themselves but their season isn't a long one. Soon they make way for the stalwarts of summer: tomatoes, eggplant, basil, and sweet corn.
The dailiness of life has this hum to it. Like an old refrigerator on its last leg, it drowns out the nuances of life. Then the fridge finally dies and...quiet. Birds chirp, you can hear the breeze again. Turning off the electricity might be a prescription for sanity.
Every winter I sit and look out my window at the birch trees and marvel at their seasonal transformation. In the winter rain they glisten like jeweled necklaces, the wetness revealing red undertones to the normal drabness of the branches. Nude and dormant, the branches sway like a metronome, ticking off the days until they awaken once again. When the buds start to swell, the redness intensifies, and then, exploding in a day, they burst into lime-green radiance. It is the same every year. Yet, with each vigil, I wonder if this is year that spring might not come.
Regular readers of this blog know that I have a certain fascination with a tree in the town park. The tree is an easy object of affection. It is an impressive sculptural expression of nature, set on a flat plain and surrounded by green grass. It has cinematic appeal—seems larger than life.