I wait in January, interminably it seems, for the smallest, briefest indication that Spring is coming. A flash of blue from a bluebird, a hint of green in the rushes, and my heart beats faster and my spirits lift. Difficult to find, those moments, as Yoda would say. When the snow melts, there is a brief period on the prairie when the grasses have enough remaining moisture to display their mahogany and umber undertones. Then dry in a twinkling, the rolling hills of brown stretch to the horizon, dead grasses blending individual hues to a bland carpet of boring. Life is color, death is drab.
Last week, when the weather teased me with warm sunshine and clear air, I strolled during lunch to the K-State Gardens, seeking signs of Spring. I wanted only a brief glimpse of a timid peony breaking through the ground, or the slightest sight of a subterranean squill squeezing through the frozen crust. My desires, like a foundering ship against the shore, dashed by the dry remnants of dead perennials, the only bright spot, Bittersweet, both in name and in spirit, as pictured above. Russet sumac berries failed to break the brown monotony and puce coralberries merely blended into the bleakness. I left, back to work in walled confines, to wait further, sullen and sad.
Thank God, in such moments, for Bittersweet and Fake Blogs.