Friday, February 19, 2010

March 4th!

Where I live on the shore of Lake Michigan, city snow has turned that end-of-winter smoky brownish gray. Everyone I know has lost at least one mitten. Even diehard winter sports enthusiasts grow weary of ice, cold, and shovels before any hint of green decorates the landscape.

One change is visible, though—about this time of year, sunlight takes on a different quality. Could it possibly be brighter? Animals seem to notice. Crows group up and flap around, cawing. Squirrels make desperate leaps to the bird feeders. Owls hoot for mates at night. My favorite season is just over the horizon. I look forward to spring with such relish that I always celebrate the date that feels like its true beginning to me: March 4th.

Get it?

March 4th is more than a date—it’s an attitude. For me, it’s a reminder to take the bull by the horns and take care of business. Blaze a trail and follow it. Harness the horses and plow ahead.

You get it, right? March forth!

Come spring, I keep my eyes and ears open for warblers and orioles. I peer beneath snow trying to spot the first daffodils, walk around searching for snowdrops and crocuses, peek into gardens where scilla spreads. Any day now, we’ll all surrender to one of those glorious afternoons when everyone rejoices in the world and we all leave our jackets on the playground. Troubles seem trivial, problems feel petty, and all we want to do is drop everything, run outdoors, and soak up the sunshine.

Now is the time to pick up your pen or your paintbrush or your hammer. Plunge ahead with determination. Join me—and the wrens and the wildflowers—and celebrate spring, the season of renewal and opportunity. March forth!

Writing Workout

Think up your own personal holiday and write about it. Answer these questions:
  • When would you celebrate your special day?
  • Why did you choose the date you chose?
  • What would you call your holiday?
  • How would you celebrate?
  • Who would you invite to celebrate with you?
  • Where would your celebration take place?


Carmela Martino said...

I've been noticing the changes, too. In particular, that the days are getting longer. Spring can't be far now!

April Halprin Wayland said...

I love the idea of creating my own personal holiday! My family's would be April 16th Eve...that is, the night of April 15th, when Tax Season is officially over and we have our husband/father back after a looooooong winter!

Beverley BevenFlorez said...

March Forth . . . love it! It's a great writing exercise, too. There are so many important moments in our lives that happen during holidays. It's a good thing for a writer to ponder about.