Thursday, March 13, 2014

Renewal, Frost and Puddles

Given the impermanence that is at the core of wabisabi, the passage of the seasons bears acknowledgement.  I had been tempted for quite some time to bear witness to the winter with a mention of frost and its transience but we underwent a winter where the frost seemed too stubborn to regard as transient and the depth of the winter chill too aggressive to regard as just another stage in the passing of the calendar.  Writing about the momentary contemplation of a frost bearded leaf or blade of grass during a winter such as that of 2013-2014 might have earned a sneer of disdain, questions about sanity and lost readers.  (And really, how many do I have to begin with?)

With the sudden thaw that has done all it can to compensate for the long, deep winter, the puddles have earned little to no complaint.  They have not been preceded by hardy robins or pussy willows portending the spring during the last days of February.  The puddles' spread in all directions has been the first herald, which I can't recall being the case for perhaps decades. The task of tiptoeing around the placid, watery aftermath is welcome and the moments when the light casts an extra reflection that had not been acknowledge since last spring somehow multiply the brightness of the lengthening days.

There is news as well that this long winter has actually been of some benefit -- perhaps not in a way that many of us might notice or heed for long, but a reminder that the passing of the seasons, each with their distinct characteristics rather than the blurring of distinctions into a more convenient and temperate consistency or sameness is indeed worth pausing to welcome.  The break in the winter weather this week has been some relief and it has marked a start to spring that is confidently celebrated as has not been the case here in several years.  Yes, we will brace ourselves for another blast of snow or three, but spring has announced its arrival as it hasn't upon the conclusion of milder more temperate winters.  A transition as marked and distinct as the one announcing the start of Spring 2014, is one that will make the year the more memorable and the days to come more invigorating and treasured.