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March

March 10, 2004

Itís been a long winter.

But I looked out my window the other morning and the sky was bright blue with puffy white clouds, and the huge cottonwood outside my window was loaded with birds. Black and white woodpeckers busily hammered away, and little brown birds hopped around the branches at impossible angles. I canít see any buds on the tree, and there is still plenty of snow on the ground beneath it, but the birds are back.

We have survived another winter.

There are a few tenacious leaves that have somehow clung to the tree despite numerous high winds. How do they manage that? It reminds me of the way we burrow in, cling to anything stable, and anchor ourselves to endure yet another harsh winter. And we have endured, as have they. Eventually they will be forced to give way to fresh new foliage, but we humans are our own new foliage. We have the capacity to renew ourselves, and every spring we feel the desire.

Even though there is still snow to shovel, we are talking about gardens and yard work and spring cleaning. Who cares about the snow? Itís March! It will melt soon. But there are gardens to plan now.

Winter drags, and flies. It seems like we have barely finished with Christmas, and now the days are staying light well past suppertime. Was it only a couple weeks ago that we were enduring bitter cold that frosted our lungs the moment we stepped outside? Now we see frequent 40 degree temperatures, and we complain that 30 degrees feels cold! But it seems like I have been cold forever, and it feels so good to be warm.

We began the month with a raging sleetstorm, but now the sky is bright March blue.

And the birds are back.