|Bleeding heart blooms in our yard in April and is just starting to emerge. Patience, patience.|
This is the second time I've "published" this poem by my dear friend, Michele Templer. The first time was when I was a reporter for the local newspaper (Grants Pass Daily Courier in Oregon), and wrote a weekly column called Second Thoughts. It was 1984.
For 12 years I worked primarily from my home office, using an early modem to send my work into the paper.
|Here's what it looked like, but my phone was black and squat, not trying to be modern like the one pictured. It was cumbersome and slow. Its dial-up connection was sketchy.|
Working at home was nice, but it didn't prevent deadline angst. On the day that Michele's poem arrived—she either delivered it in person or mailed it, because it was handwritten on a half sheet of textured duff-colored paper—I was having a horrible very bad day, as we used to say.
It was late February, and early spring had revealed itself in little sprouts of green here and there, but the skies were still bruised, rain still fell, and cold soaked through the walls.
I was writing about a dysfunctional city council meeting, and worrying, at the same time, about our first-born son, Quinn, whose public school education I was monitoring. Why do kids have to be labeled so young? He didn't make the "bluebirds" or whatever the best first-grade reading group was named. (He turned out fine and is now Quinn Korbulic, PhD.) I worried about "kid" stuff a lot when I was trying to write.
The house needed cleaning. Laundry needed doing. Dinner needed planning and cooking. I had a deadline, and was awaiting a phone call from a disgruntled incoherent person whose quote I needed to complete my article.
Then I'd have to wait for the dial-up modem to work to get the stupid article in that day's paper. And I'd run out of coffee. Grrr.
I took a moment to read Michele's poem.
My shoulders relaxed. I sighed and sank into my chair. Then I smiled in agreement with a truth she realized. Somehow, no matter what, we make it through the days, the months, the years, the seasons.
Spring will soon emerge. And it will be all better.
|A little sun, longer days, warmth, and we can bloom in unlikely places.|
I'm thinking of friends and relatives in northern climates who are discouraged that winter still clings to the forests, the hills, the roads, the car windows, the driveways, the sidewalks, the heating bills, the livestock in fields, the dogs in yards, the kids in soccer and softball practices.
Winter also grips their moods and their sometimes fragile states of mental health.
I don't know where you live, but the Southern Oregon forecast calls for chilly rain and, by this Friday, snow at lower elevations. What?!
All this cold and wet despite that today is the spring solstice. It really is.
As Michele wrote:
~ Michele TemplerYellow crocuses bloom
Outside the door.
The sullen grey sky
Hangs heavily, neither hot nor cold;
Trees bud on branches bare.
Winter would hold us,
if we’d stay,
in chilled stasis.
Spring beckons, often too softly
to be heard.
Transitions are hazardous
Still, stumbling, we somehow emerge.
|A super bloom on Upper Table Rock, Rogue Valley, Oregon, April 2017. Coming soon!|