The hinge of the season is an interesting time. Not the one, not the other, but blending both. Its own thing, really, were we not so ingrained in our dualisms. April only seems a cruel month if you have no memory of January.
As April Comes
As April comes, winter wrestles spring again,
winning one day, losing the next, losing more
and more often as the southwest wind gusts in,
drives rain, liquefies the stinking soil, hooking up
jumper cables to the life which bides sleeping.
And inside me, where life has also lain sleeping,
I hear the wakeup call of the roaring night wind.
Its electricity in my brain shakes me from sleep.
I emerge from blankets like a bear from its lair
and stumble-foot to the kitchen to make coffee.
Water stands now in those hollows of the yard
that yesterday held snow. Good; good. Too long
has this world been frozen. A bit of greening
by the south-facing wall, which tomorrow (should
weather hold) might pop a spray of snowdrops.
A day, for once, for walking ’round the village:
going to the church for tai chi, going to the stores
for food and resupply, chatting with friends
not seen for months, moving on to the diner
for gossip, burger, fries — a day for the library.
A day, perhaps, for driving nowhere in particular,
just because the roads are clear and because
the winter coat, the hat, gloves, scarf, and boots
can stay behind in the hallway back at home.
A day of lightness, warmth, and ease. Yes, please.
As winter ends, but before it really ends, it’s sort of
Rip Van Winkle, sort of dubya-tee-eff. Tomorrow might
be “Remember me?”– back to drifts, shivers, shovels,
back to hunker down. But that’s what makes today
so sweet. It’s freeze and thaw that makes the sap run.
Note: unpublished draft