Nature Meditation #12 – In the Season

“Being aware of the splendor of the seasons, of the natural world, makes us understand man’s critical need for wild places. Living with familiar things and moving in the seasons can fulfill that profound need common to us all: a sense of place.” – Jo Northrop, Country Matters

I can sense it. Spring. I feel it in the rustling of the wind and the warmth of the sunrays. I smell it in the air, and see it in the blooms of the daffodils. Spring beauties are popping up all over my acre. I saw ants this morning, a whole line of them scurrying up and over a retaining wall. The deep pink Japonica blooms are open, and the daffodils are waving in a gusty south wind. It is here.

I watch for spring, one half of my being overcome with joy that the earth has once again renewed itself. The grass WILL turn green; the leaves WILL unfurl; the flowers WILL bloom. After the resting months, life begins another cycle. Each year it is glorious. I sense an awakening in my spirit, a renewed energy, renewed hope, and even renewed courage. Who can feel beaten down when the sun rises on a moist, fresh spring morning?

The other half of my being remembers spring storms and quakes. It wasn’t always this way. I used to think that the occasional storm was fun. I looked forward to the thunder that shook the house, and the rain pelting down. I was comfortable with my ignorance of the devastation that spring storms could bring. But now, after Joplin (MO), after Greensburg (KS), after Moore (OK), I face the spring with more than a little dread.

It is a dichotomy for me. Storms are certainly part of nature. We need the rain to nourish our crops and all the plants; we need the wind to carry the seeds and pollen that allow our fruits and nuts and trees to create fruits and to colonize. But the power of a thunderstorm, the terror of a tornado or hurricane, it is nature’s proof of what we cannot and will never control.

isn’t that just like us humans, always wanted to control? And we are so afraid of what we cannot control? Storms can kill, and the heartbreak lingers. I remind myself that there are other things that kill. Our own kind has become quite good at finding ways to kill other humans and other animals. Put in perspective, lives lost in natural calamities are MUCH fewer than lives lost in war, or through crime. Whether lives lost in storms or through disease, we seem to be much more appalled when it is our Mother Nature’s fault. We grit our teeth and curse under our breaths. After all, that television program we must watch has been preempted by storm coverage.

But, enough about storms. They are after all, just part of our planet’s climate. I must never forget that spring is so much more than storms. It is glorious blooms and colorful birds, bright days and moonlit skies. It is the hint of green in the trees and on the lawn — and finally, morning coffee in a chair with the warm morning sun caressing my face.

Join me in welcoming this spring!

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