I've been watching a fat robin outside my window. She caught my eye as she sat defiantly in a snow covered tree. As if to say, "It's the first day of spring, and I will have my day!"
Ironic. We sat sunning, boys shirtless, soaking up pre-spring warmth in the 70's just a few days ago. Then last night winter heaved a final (we hope) breath and dumped two inches of pure white snow on our mountain side. That's the unpredictability of the season.
The robin isn't the only rebel out today. I woke to someone chirping loudly outside my window. The sun soaked ground stealthily melts the snow from below, leaving puddles in the white mounds. Clumps of frost fall defeated from tree branches as spring swings her invisible knockout punch.
Death and new life don't have a smooth exchange. Rather they do a funny dance, a tug-o-war, a final round with a mix of mediums . . . sun, snow, robins. Peace, sorrow, joy. Until winter relents and spring takes hold.
This is like life. We imagine this symphony of four distinct seasons and ourselves in the conductor's chair. But our seasons get mixed up, especially at the exchange. Winter and chilly death show up unexpectedly in the fall just like spring's new life surprises smack dab in the middle of winter.
The robin has been playing in the puddles. Or more likely searching for lunch. She's my hero today. She showed up.
Every moment the patches of green grew bigger and the patches of snow grew smaller . . . the trees shook off their robes of snow. . . a bird suddenly chirped from the branch of a tree. It was answered by the chuckle of another bird a little further off. . . "This is no thaw," said the dwarf, suddenly stopping. "This is Spring."
"Wrong will be right when Aslan comes in sight,
At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more,
When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death,
And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again."
"in spring, down solemn avenues of beech
and across sunny glades of oak,
through wild orchards of snow-white cherry trees,
past roaring waterfalls
and mossy rocks and echoing caverns,
up windy slopes alight with gorse bushes,
and across the shoulders of heather mountains
and along giddy ridges
and down, down, down again into wild valleys
and out into acres of blue flowers."
~ C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe