Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Ah, spring. It always seems to me that it is the most creative season. I don't know if that's true for writers, it's just a theory I've long held. I've never kept a calendar to see if my output is actually more prolific or my writing is more profound in the spring of the year but I choose to believe it is.
Spring represents awakenings and growth and birth, not only in fact, but in our souls. Every season has its beauties but spring is when we hunger for beauty most. The colorful hues of Daffodils and Tulips, Crocus and Hyacinths, seem more exhilarating after months of brown grass and gray skies. Seeing trees erupt into clouds of pastel color warms the heart. So does seeing rosebuds fatten under a spring sun.
We used to take rides in Spring just to see all the babies - gamboling lambs, awkward colts, curious calves who'd come over to the fence and snuff you with fat wet noses. Military-like lines of chicks or ducks following in Mama's footsteps. Signs would begin to appear on fence posts - "free puppies" or "free kittens". Not so many farmers keep free-running livestock anymore which I find sad.
Springs brings its own characteristic smells, delighting the nose. The entire kitchen is overtaken by the fragrance emanating from the bounteous vase of Lilacs on the table. The odor of grilling drifts across backyards. There is an earthy muskiness in the air that comes from spring rain and thawed earth and reborn plants. And nothing can beat the smell of a cast-iron skillet full of morel mushrooms, fried in butter.
And seasonal sounds - we begin to hear the joyful songs of birds before dawn celebrating the matings that will lead to a new generation. I associate the sound of spring with the throaty roar of motorcycles flying past my house as well as trucks with windows down, booming with base. Nah, it doesn't irritate me. I'm old now but I remember the blood-stirring of spring and the wish to advertise the glory of it. No different than the wild singing of geese and ducks heading for home or the haunting howls of coyotes. For most species, spring equals sex and babies, subconsciously if not consciously, and they extol it in different ways.
For Christians, of course, spring is the season of Easter - the ultimate act of being reborn for them. When I was young and we were still church-going Catholics, Easter meant new clothes - pastel dresses and straw hats and patent-leather shoes. Now it means (hopefully) getting Good Friday off work.
Spring means freedom from coats and gloves. It means a return to porch-sitting, cleaning out closets to cast away the old.
For writers, perhaps it means the birth of a new idea, a new manuscript, a new motivation. That's what spring does.