Thursday, May 1, 2014

The Signs of Spring

The Signs of Spring
For winter’s subjects, where its rule is harsh,
The long-awaited spring is cause for joy.
The pores are opened, that the winter closed,
So plants and beasts alike can breathe at ease.

The ice has thawed upon the frozen lake.
The fields are basking in the strengthened sun.
And in the city, winter clothes are shed
As warmth and sunshine favor streets again.

But what would spring be like without the trees,
Whose leaves in April bring to mind the down
That softly starts to grow at puberty –
Or if no birds appeared, to chirp and sing?

And what would spring be, sans the blooms that blaze
In roadside gardens, tinted fireworks each,
Or sans the grass that greens the earth beneath,
As winter’s chasteness yields to vernal surge?

And what would spring be like without the rain
That gently drifts – or lashes roofs with zest?
Whenever winter’s parched our souls for long,
It’s drafts like these that finally slake our thirst.

What summers are, to those in torrid zones,
The winters are, to those in polar realms.
At summer's end, as clouds and rain are bliss,
So winter's ending in the springtime is.

The winter drains away the source of life.
The children sicken and the elders pine.
Then spring appears and seems to fire anew
Those batteries that winter had discharged.

So spring brings hope again to weary hearts
That winter burdened with its weight of woe.
And as we feel the sun upon our skins,
It seems to wash away the gathered grime.

The signs of spring are everywhere at once
And winter soon will be a memory.
And though we’ve lived our share of seasons, this,
The waking up – it wakes us yet again.

How many winters more, how many springs?
How many summers past and autumns gone?
And yet, at April’s end, we greet this spring,
With gratitude for being still alive.

Without the winter, could there be a spring?
Without the hunger or the thirst, a feast?
So yin and yang, conjoined, give rise to all,
To seasons, to despair and hope reborn.
2014 May 1, Thu.
Brooklyn, New York


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