Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Not winter, not spring

Every day I watch the sun rise earlier and set later. A minute here, a minute there and soon the difference is a large one. The sky is no longer pitch black when I get home. Before long, the chickens will still be awake (and will need attention) in the evenings.

When I walk Dog in the mornings by the time we are through, I can see the barest hint of orange color in the east. Overhead, the stars are dimming and what was once a velvety black showcase for nature’s diamonds is now a steel blue.

Canada geese call every morning from over on the new pond. They are raucous and I can tell they are chasing each other around, trying to find the best nest sites and chase off interlopers and upstarts. A great horned owl calls from somewhere distant, perhaps over on the next ridge.

Not even the skunk cabbage is breaking through the ground just yet, but the first hint of green can’t be far off. The days are untypically warm for this time of year. The nights sometimes drop below freezing, sometimes well below freezing, but sometimes never make it below that mark at all. It’s that time of the year I should rename the time of many coats. I never know from morning to night which coat will be needed, the light jacket, the raincoat with lining, the heavier jacket I wear in all but the coldest weather. Sometimes I need all three on the same day.

I still can’t smell the spring, though the ground is not frozen. Spring has its own pure smell. I think of it as a smell of new life and fresh earth. The earth is fresh on this late February morning, but I’m starting to think the germinating seeds know enough not to break out of their loamy beds and reach for the sun just yet. Perhaps next week.


Granny Sue said...

This has been such a strange winter. I'm not liking it. I hope winter doesn't decide to arrive in March or April.

Penelope said...

What a lovely sky you captured. I'm having similar thoughts as I consider just how early I might be able to start the spring planting that says "as soon as the ground can be worked in spring." That could almost be now, in this very odd Minnesota winter, as we've had so little snow.

Cicero Sings said...

No real signs of spring here yet either. Sometimes the Redwing Blackbirds have already arrived as well as some geese. Last night it dropped down to -22C ... a big deterrent to any early arrivals I'm sure.