|early April snow|
Photo by J. Harrington
Post February, the National Weather Service has published an outlook that indicated much of Minnesota has a 33% to 40% probability of enjoying above normal temperatures during March, April and May and a 40% to 50% probability of above normal precipitation for those three months. I'm not at all sure how to make such information relevant to my day-to-day life. To paraphrase, there's a less than 50% probability that Spring in Minnesota this year will be wetter and warmer than normal.
As we've noted a number of times, Minnesota would be a much more pleasant place to live, work and play if it's weather averages weren't comprised of such extremes. Maybe those kinds of weather and climate change issues help explain the lyrics to Joan Baez' song One Day at a Time
I live one day at a timeTrying to anticipate the effect this may have on fly fishing, there's not much snow left to melt so it would seem that there's limited likelihood that above normal precipitation will compound snow melt runoff. Of course, we don't know how much above normal any given precipitation event may be. Might we see streams "in spate" time and again this Spring? We'll know those details one day at a time. If they recur year after year, we'll recognize a pattern change.
I dream one dream at a time
Yesterday's dead, and tomorrow is blind
And I live one day at a time.
|red-winged blackbird, harbinger of Spring|
Photo by J. Harrington
These are the kinds of topics that make me think, again, about the need to provide a relevant cultural context for information and information that's relevant for a cultural context. Several Native American groups appear to be providing excellent examples of how to go about such an effort. The Iñupiaq near Barrow Alaska offer one perspective, the Navajo another.
People who live closer to the land than most of us, those who hunt, fish, forage, grow their own food, have a need for and closer relationship to the weather than those whose primary concern is how will it affect their commute. How much work would it be, and how rewarding, to find a better balance between our daily lives and seasonal or climate changes? To learn to recognize the current patterns so we can track changes in them. I know that I enjoy the anticipation of the arrival of waterfowl on local waters almost as much as the splashdowns, honkings and quackings themselves. Sort of like it's the whole Christmas season I enjoy, not just Christmas day.
Thirteen Ways of Looking at a BlackbirdIAmong twenty snowy mountains,The only moving thingWas the eye of the blackbird.III was of three minds,Like a treeIn which there are three blackbirds.IIIThe blackbird whirled in the autumn winds.It was a small part of the pantomime.IVA man and a womanAre one.A man and a woman and a blackbirdAre one.VI do not know which to prefer,The beauty of inflectionsOr the beauty of innuendoes,The blackbird whistlingOr just after.VIIcicles filled the long windowWith barbaric glass.The shadow of the blackbirdCrossed it, to and fro.The moodTraced in the shadowAn indecipherable cause.VIIO thin men of Haddam,Why do you imagine golden birds?Do you not see how the blackbirdWalks around the feetOf the women about you?VIIII know noble accentsAnd lucid, inescapable rhythms;But I know, too,That the blackbird is involvedIn what I know.IXWhen the blackbird flew out of sight,It marked the edgeOf one of many circles.XAt the sight of blackbirdsFlying in a green light,Even the bawds of euphonyWould cry out sharply.XIHe rode over ConnecticutIn a glass coach.Once, a fear pierced him,In that he mistookThe shadow of his equipageFor blackbirds.XIIThe river is moving.The blackbird must be flying.XIIIIt was evening all afternoon.It was snowingAnd it was going to snow.The blackbird satIn the cedar-limbs.
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Please be kind to each other while you can.