Thursday, January 8, 2015

Yes, Virginia, there is a bright side

purple finches at feeder
Photo by J. Harrington

I'm trying to look on the bright side. The purple finches have returned to the feeders. Living through the current cold and snow and wind gives us something to look forward to: next week's thaw, followed, several months later, by a Minnesota Spring that will probably last all of a week or two. Will it cheer you up much to be reminded that in our neck of the woods we had several inches of fresh snow arrive after mid-April last Spring? Why is it that Minnesota can never find global warming or El Nino when we need it?

T. S. Eliot wrote that "April is the cruelest month." I wonder if he ever spent a Winter in Minnesota. Not only do we have the weather and slippery roads, the legislature is in session again. Just remember, a thaw is forecast in a little more than a week and notably warmer temperatures should start next Tuesday. If you want to feel a little better, you can read some of last January's postings on My Minnesota. Another thing you could do is take a look at this example of how to enjoy Winter if you dress the part, know where to go, and appreciate the beauty of trumpeter swans. Or, you could look for a

Turkey Fallen Dead from Tree

By Dore Kiesselbach 

Startled from snow-day slumber by a neighbor’s mutt,
it banged its buzzard’s head then couldn’t solve
the problem of the white pine’s limbs
with wings nearly too broad for a planned descent.
Somewhere an awkward angel knows
whether it was dead before it hit the ground.
Any sinner could tell it was dead after—
eyes unseen beneath bare and wrinkled lids,
feet drawn up almost as high as hands.
I loved to watch thistle and millet
disappear beneath it in the yard.
As snow covers feathers that will still be
iridescent in the spring I remember seeing
a businessman take a dripping handful
of pocket change and throw it down
a subway grate beside a homeless man.
The coins bounced and clattered, vanishing
in the humid dark. The rich man said
now you’re having a shitty day too.
But it’s not a shitty day and won’t be
when I retrieve the bird and walk it—
toes curling stiff from a shopping bag—
to a houseless scrap of oak savannah
birdseed drew it from and dig it
into deeper snow so what was hoarded
by a man may by the thaw be doled.

Thanks for visiting. Come again when you can.
Please be kind to each other while you can.