Push on little bud

Spring has no choice. It is powerless against it’s directive: Push forth or die. Humans aren’t so lucky.

Each year around this time is the same I’m forced out of my cave-like lifestyle. I reluctantly heed the call of spring. The answer is nature,  always bringing me to some green and blooming garden or arboretum. My husband also loves the outdoors, and so I have a constant companion to participate in my awe-like observations in all seasons. But spring is special.

Spring is harsh and mean and ruthless. I used to think it was winter that possessed all these qualities; but, now I know that winter is a trickster. Winter protects you from having to participate in life. Winter is an excuse to curl up in a slumber and wallow and eat and seek warmth without anyone doubting or driving you forth into the outdoors.

Each year I am shocked, rather unpleasantly at first, at spring’s arrival. It’s like spotting a ghost you know no one will believe you having seen. Spring lures you out of winter gently at first then clobbers you with all things that remind you that life is hard and you can’t hide forever.

In the arboretum today as I climbed out of the car, I was faced with sunshine. Not the sad excuse that peeks out in winter to remind you another day has started; but, real sunshine. Every year is the same and I am stupid for not remembering it.

I blink repeatedly, harshly, angrily at the spring sun. It’s too bright, too yellow. Too gaudy. It’s staring down, daring me to move forward, onward out of my shell. I’m overdressed for the weather, always too many layers each spring. I am forced to remove clothes that have hidden me and my cold weather comfort of hot chocolate and cookies of french fries and baguettes.

My husband and I venture forth into this arboretum we have walked over in every season, knowing each tree and blossom. Peeking inside the greenhouse and shed. Checking on “our” frog and whether we can spot his clever camoflauged body hiding in the pond. It is our place as much as anyone’s backyard belongs to them. We respect it and each spring we start anew with our worship of it.

Spring buds are ugly and weak. Awkward and misshapen like newborns. All the wrong colors. Pinks the color of a pale nipple, purples like a healing bruise, whites jaundiced and sickly. Forced out of fuzzy, tight-knit cocoons, poking tips of soon-to-be something. They are shades of brighter things to come. They hold hope in all the things they have not yet become.

Hostas in the deep woods, where the Japanese flora is planted, push out of taut wombs with alien-like buds of purple cups with green splotches. Early spiders lay their nets for lunch on a Hosta bud’s open mouth. Some have started early and their monster-sized cabbage bodies push forth high above the carpet of ferns and vines and the detritus that litters the forest’s floor.

In winter there was no scent. Cold blanketed the air with smells of monotony and mundaneness. Colors were restricted to dead brown on white, brick-faced buildings against white, mountainous remains of a blizzard against a drape of white. Life in winter was like a meager, old beggar you acknowledge but do your best to walk away from quickly.

The smells of spring tug at me, intriguing my nose. I am drawn to each scent on the breeze and stop, like my cat, and open my mouth as if it might help me identify what is entering my nostrils with better accuracy: Mulch’s choking sweetness, witch hazel’s luxury soap scent, and the linden tree like a Japanese tea house.

Winter asks nothing of me. Sit still, be quiet. It’s dark. Sleep now, sleep as long as you like. Why wake up? It’s too cold out anyway.

Spring begs to be noticed and appreciated. It pierces your ears with shrills of overly-excited birds. It flings blossoms off it’s trees at you. It flushes the air with goldenness and radiance and warmth and hope.

Each spring I forget I can move. I must move. I’ve no choice either. The season for sleeping will be back. Right now I hear the message loud and clear, “Push forth little bud!”

Twitter Digg Delicious Stumbleupon Technorati Facebook Email