Redbud Winter

It was so terribly cold.  Snow was falling, and it was almost dark. Dark still.  The early morning sun yanked away.  The early spring taken too. Winter.  Full blown and the calendar reads March 14th.  Not too late for cold and snow, but there had been such hope.

I hope the daffodils survived.  Early and glorious this year.  A field of yellow outside my kitchen window.  I kept meaning to cut some for my office.  Today is the day.  If they are not frostbitten.

Photo by Dulcey Lima on Unsplash

There were hard frost warnings last night.  Which winter does that make this?  It’s too early for Redbud winter though the dogwoods are already blooming. Or are those pear trees? White blossoms on the hillside. 

A soft winter.  A warm winter.  No snow to speak of.  Climate change is upsetting the rhythms of our life.  Wait until it really gets going.

80F in February.  Longing for sandals and short sleeves, but the body knows.  The wind whispers, “Too soon.”  It is too soon.  It always snows in March, and we are always so surprised when it does.  We just had the worm moon – the time of year when earthworms come to the surface.  If you dig in your garden you will find them, enriching the earth with their casings.  Turning the soil early.  Getting things ready. But it is too early to be in the garden. 

It is too early for redbud, for dogwood, for locust, for blackberry.  It is too early, but not too late for snow.  For dark.  For cold.

Just when we thought we were into the glories of an Appalachian Spring.  I fell in love with these mountains in the spring.  Their greening.  The soft haze of green about the trees and the vivid redbud dotting the mountains with brilliant color.  Purple, belying its name.  Redbud.  A bright lavender.  Astonishing against the gray and that bit of green. An artist’s palette.

Redbud winter, but too early for redbud.  Just barely.  Any minute.  It always blooms in advance of Easter.  Always.  And It takes my breath.  Always.  I stop and admire those trees, these hills, that green.  The return of the sun.  Of hope.  Of warmth. 

Redbud winter though it’s too soon even for that.  Just winter.  I got my hopes up too soon. 

But soon.  The lavender blossoms will explode.  The trees will leaf out.  The gray skies become blue.  A crystalline blue – shimmery in the perfect early spring light. 

NOTE: This was a writing prompt wherein we began a story with the opening lines of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Little Match Girl.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s