I enjoy the winter hikes up into the spruce and fir and alpine tundra and deep snows, but I like to live down low where spring comes sooner. In our yard the snow has nearly melted away, again, and probably mostly for good until next winter. The frost is leaving the ground. Sweet, tender shoots of chives are pushing up through the decayed leaves of last year. The pointed tips of the tulip bulbs are just poking through the cold soil.
Red maple buds are swelling.
The buds of the hazelnut bush in our yard absorb the late afternoon sun.
While I pruned I listened to the male red-winged blackbirds calling from the wetland. They arrived last week and I thought of Gerry. He would have noted their arrival. A brown creeper sang from one of the white pines--the first time I heard their thin, high notes this year.
It feels like winter is behind us and each day forward will bring new sights and sounds of a sweet spring.