When the thaw happens, it happens all at once.
Almost two months ago now.
We go walking in the woods: me, T and two dear friends. New-fallen snow lines every limb and leaf. The light is pale silver; the air cold, but not too cold.
Like Winter is making up its mind.
We have the dogs with us, and they go tearing through the underbrush ahead, leaping and yelping with delight. We watch them kicking up mud and wet leaves, blackening their muzzles, and we can’t help but laugh.
After awhile, I let the others go ahead of us, chasing down the dogs, and I hang back on the trail, just looking.
The forest is profoundly quiet — the deep quiet you only hear after it snows — and I push back the furry hood of my coat just to listen to that emptiness.
I stand there for a few moments. I’m waiting for something without knowing what.
And then it comes: the thaw.
Almost all at once, the air temperature must tick up a half a degree or two, because suddenly all the snow dotting the branches liquifies. Tiny dewdrops spangle every twig.
And then — oh, God! — the sun. It stabs a long scar in the clouds and comes tearing through in solid gold bars: shooting through the treetops. Bouncing off the trunks. Catching and sizzling in the million dewdrops.
Setting them all on fire.
And now I am sitting here, months later, trying to put it into words: how paper-thin the membrane, between the dark and the light. The cold and the flame.
How fragile the cold.
How fierce and strong the Spring.
How deep and wide the joy, when at last — at last — it comes.
Happy Spring, friends. I think we made it. ❤