It is such a joy to be outside these days with the birds calling from nearly every tree and bush, I’m thrilled to be alive to witness the renewal of another spring. After this past, bitterly cold winter, these warm, sunny days and blue skies are balm for the soul.
I hear a redwing blackbird call from the river’s edge and the warblers, who returned a few days ago, sing from the woodland trees. Flashes of yellow, they establish new territories and hunt for insects in the thick brush. I hear and see robins, cardinals and catbirds and I heard my first wood thrush last night, always a highlight to my day when I hear their melodious song.
Along the woodland paths, the dog-tooth violets/adder’s tongues/trout lilies (Erythronium americanum) bloom. Their many common names refer to features like the fang-like shape of the bulb and the brown and gray-green mottled foliage.
Another wildflower currently blossoming are red trilliums/wake robins/stinking Benjamins (Trillium erectum).
The latter common name refers to their unpleasant scent, which attracts carrion flies that pollinate them. ‘Trillium’ suggests the three petals and leaves of this common woodland native. Their rich, red color is a sight to behold.
With the warm weather we’ve been having, the leaves are unfurling almost overnight. The long vistas we enjoyed over winter are about to disappear for the next six months as the leaves extend to exploit every bit of sunlight. The woods will become hushed, shady retreats once again. I look forward to hearing the whispering of the wind as it gently tosses the leaves, a sighing sound that holds peace for me.
The waterfall adds its quiet rushing to the music of our yard. The spring melt, which always swells its flow, has finished and it is not as noisy as it was. The stream and river are a blessing, attracting wildlife to our land.
Clean laundry flaps on the clothesline, nature’s free drying service that offers the freshest of scents. Nearby, violets and self-sowed spring bulbs dot the lawn. With no chemicals to knock them down, our lawn is alive with color and scent. Monocultures are not healthy for us or the land, and I find them rather disturbing and boring when I see them. Nature’s way works best for me.
I love this time of year, as the whole of the warm season lies ahead of me. Months of open windows, breathing the fresh air, with days spent outside in sunlight and under shady trees, drinking in all the abundance that nature generously offers. What a blessing!