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Dinner is over and I have come out to the back step to watch the bay and witness the arrival of spring.
Mid-April is decidedly confident, like a starlet with an abundance of dogwood and cherry blossoms, and oh, those azaleas and the way the wisteria is already snaking through the trees.
It would be so easy to stay right here and watch the day end.
I don’t want to put anyone to bed or sweep the crumbs from the floor or wash the pan. But inside, I hear the boys laughing, not bickering yet, so I sit a bit longer with my palms turned up, feeling spring in my hands until the cry of a jay makes me wince.
Then the mocking bird flies out of last year’s tomato plants, its striped wings as sharp as its message is clear. He is so loud and insistent he competes with the artillery on the other side of the water, and I try to remember we have to let all the birdsong in if we are going to hear any of it.
This morning I walked with a friend, and we passed a group of Marines practicing some kind of martial arts, one kneeling behind the other within a border of sand bags, an elbow in camouflage hugging a neck.They were gentle in their demonstration of this fierce art, and I felt the effect this particular way they train has on my heart.They are careful even as they are practicing the quick skill of killing.Somehow, overnight, a dogwood tree has turned white in my neighbor’s back yard, right in front of the water, the bay that is now calm and waveless, the whitecaps somehow turning into blossoms in front of my eyes. Just sit with me and I’ll be gentle and easy on your skin.And this is why spring is so painful to me: all this unfurling and opening. The other day I was sitting outside of the elementary school, waiting for Oliver to come out and wave his lunch box at me.He hates the bus and he says it’s too loud for him to read his book on the way home.