This Side of the Vernal Equinox

I see the signs of spring around me.  It’s not hard, if you have taken the time to learn where to look. The cycles of the moon, the movements of the planets and the changes in seasons all have a story to tell for those who wish to listen.  As someone who fancies his spirituality lying somewhere nearer to a naturalist outlook rather than a traditional religion, I have often stated to my friends that I am on a first name basis with nature. I’ve prided myself (either correctly or incorrectly) on listening to her, and trying to understand the messages that she is sending.   And over the last few weeks, she’s had a lot to say.

Although it is the coming fall that speaks to me most, the return of spring is definitely the most dramatic of the seasonal changes, pushing the grey scales of winter aside in favor of colorful spring flowers and shrubs along with the reawakening of green grass (or the yellow of dandelions if your yard is like mine).

Already the usual signs of spring have begun to cycle around me.  My daffodils have come and gone.  My star magnolia has already dropped its white flowers in favor of the soft, pussy willow like pods that will adorn it for the rest of summer.  My dogwood tree grows brighter every day as its white flowers begin to open.  By the purple hue on the vines of my wisteria, I know that soon its open flowers will be spreading their fragrance across my backyard.

I’ve recently discovered that newer ventures in my life also can indicate to me the changing of the seasons.  Here in the blogging world posts of bike rides and baseball have begun to arrive.  Photo blogs have begun to post pictures of vibrant spring flowers in lieu of the cold, snowy landscapes of weeks past. People have begun to write about their summer plans, trips to be taken, and outside projects that need attention.  All together they serve as an indication that indeed, outside the dingy office in which I type this, nature is moving forward in her cycle of rebirth.

Even a trip to the local home stores bear signs of spring’s arrival that are impossible to deny:

Like the rabbits in my back yard, a group of grills play silently outside of a local Home Depot
Ever a reminder that Spring is a time of birth, small grills are commonly seen this time of year.
To the keen eye, it is obvious that this pile of wood has begun to be picked over. Perhaps by some animal looking for materials to build its Spring home. Or possibly for some other need....
Symmetry and order in nature.

Yes, the signs are undeniable all around us.  Even those that are less in tune with nature should be able to realize by whatever activities you enjoy that yes; we are surely on this side of the Vernal Equinox.

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