Monday, April 04, 2005


Spring hits hard and fast here in central Virginia. Saturday was cold and wet: downpours blown sideways by wind, umbrellas turned inside out. I wore the clapotis and wished I had worn a coat. It was that cold.

Today the cherry tree outside my window is in full, glorious bloom. Clouds of puffy faintly-pink blossoms are massed on the otherwise bare branches. My students asked to go outside and I said yes, knowing they wouldn't pay attention, knowing I wouldn't either. We needed the sunshine, the warmth. We soaked it up.

There are little tiny daffodils all over campus, and now there are bigger ones as well. The little ones are all yellow, and even in the sunshine they look a little peaked, a little as if they came out too early and haven't gotten over it. The big ones hold back, come out slowly, yellow and white, standing tall on green stems. They're in charge right now.

I drove Mariah's friend home to Petersburg yesterday and the interstate even looked good. (This is one of the ugliest stretches on the Eastern seaboard, and I've driven most of it.) There were masses of purple and yellow flowers everywhere: plum trees and forsythia, tulip trees and daffodils. White Bradford pears and pinkish cherries. Purple misnamed redbuds.

I've never lived anywhere with so many flowering trees, all out at once. Soon the yellow-green pollen will cover our cars, the front and back porches, the walkways all over campus. But right now it's all good.

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