The First Day of Spring

April 1, 2009

Golden Tussilago

The first day of spring is a magnificent day; the day the world so eagerly awaits; the sole reason for why winter is painfully endured. It is the day when one realises winter is as far away as it can possibly be, all because spring finally has won the epic battle of the elements: spring – with its freshly melodious name – is the season victorious and a time of plenty is about to begin.

The first day of spring is a very special day, and fact is that it only occurs once every year. Commonly, it arrives most unexpectedly – one day being winter, the following spring – and does one blink, one risks to be blind to its brief moment of glory, destined to for an entire year regret now having paid attention to such an important shift of power. For, it is one thing to be there when a change comes about, and wholly another to be present whilst the rewards are reaped.

This year I was almost premature in welcoming spring and I was very close to celebrating the wrong day. So eager were I to greet my favourite season that I almost missed it. Yesterday was a windy day and though the breezes played with my hair, my ears were spared – bare, but not nibbled upon, exposed, but not turned red by the cold. The sun shone and the breezes were smooth upon my face; warmed by the sun which shone from a blue sky. I believed that to be a sign that the first day of spring had arrived, and I wished to tell the world.

I sat down with a pen in my hand – papers before me – eager to make a delighted note mentioning that the miracle of spring had come to grace the lands anew for the first time this year; that spring had come to stay. But I did not, for it did not feel right. Something, deep within told me that to do such a thing would be to do a thing rushed. And so I did not.

I am glad I did not speak before the time had come.

Today, when I walked upon brown fields scarred by the rage of winter’s snow and cast a long shadow due to the sun yet having to rise it highest in the skies, I realised that the first day of spring had arrived. Its arrival did not occur yesterday, nor would it tomorrow, for today was the first day of spring; today was the day I had awaited for so long.

Kneeling in the withered grass I removed the gloves I had used to shield my hands from the winds. Though the sun gilded my hair the winds were cool – not nibbling on my ears – numbing my fingers. That it was rosy appendages I used to pick the gold did however not matter; I found that the reddish hue enriched the yellow, making the small flower now in my hand glow yet more strongly; it was a shard of the sun and spring itself which had fallen from the skies and landed in the winter-brown grass; the first coltsfoot of the year was the whisper I had remained silent to hear: “The first day of spring has arrived.”

Like a young child I skittered home over the fields, the weights winter had placed upon my shoulders had been blown away by the faint breath that vocalised the whisper; the first day of spring had arrived and it had to celebrated. And so the coltsfoot, the smiling flower face in the shape of the sun, was gently placed in a small glass; the golden rim a symbol of the tribute I pay spring every year.

It is time to remove the cloaks which have shielded our faces and painted our eyes grey. It is time to breathe once more, time to smile and time to live, for spring is here and winter is at its farthest away:

The first day of spring has finally arrived!

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