Season of surprise

by Jordee

My favorite time of year is finally here. Its arrival is particularly welcome after this frigid and long winter. Good riddance snow and ice and short days. Though I spend most of winter craving the start of spring, when it comes, I find myself pleasantly startled again and again. It brings more relief, more lightness of heart, than I had remembered to anticipate. It surprises me.


To celebrate this season of new birth and surprise endings that are also the most natural, here is one of my favorite poems I’ve ever come across.

This time of year,
what with bulbs bursting
through to light, crashing
headlong into color, puff balls
of sudden pink, cloud clumps
of eager violet and white crowding,
clustering, clambering up and along
each naked stem and branch,
what with the gray lawn’s sweet,
impulsive greening, the chill creek’s
snow-melt speedy surface coat
of foam and flashing ripples,
what with these birdsong brimming dawns,
these chirping, marsh-born, peeper
chants that hymn the day to rest,
what with such hastening, glad abandon
rushing, coursing, flooding, charging
toward life, tales of a vacant tomb,
of bindings cast like scattered husks
and the rumbling of a cold, dead rock
to clear the way for all that is to come,
such tales seem almost natural. What else
should we have expected, after all?

– J. Barrie Shepherd