It rained last night. Not much, a mere one millimeter, but apparently enough to awaken the magic of spring. Winter has been reluctant to loosen its grip, but this gentle overnight rain had sufficient power to shift the tides.
This morning there is an après-rain freshness in the air. Overhead, summer-like wispy clouds reach out into in the cornflower-blue sky.
An enthusiastic bird chorus greets me as I step out the door. Robins, which have been slow in returning, cover the lawn in convention-like style. Black-eyed juncos gather beneath the bird feeders, cleaning up the winter leftovers. Sparrows, finches and nuthatches flit back and forth to claim seed, scattering into the trees whenever a blue jay or woodpecker noisily bullies them away. Chickadees sing their spring song. Mourning doves coo softly in the background.
The wind is light, the temperature warm. Miss Sage is anxious for a walk, and on a day like this, who am I to argue? It is all too easy to delay the tasks at hand and head down our quiet country road.
At the creek, we are greeted by the trills of red-winged blackbirds – the first of the season. The glass-like surface of the water is broken as a muskrat dives for cover upon on our arrival, ripples circling out as witness to its disappearance.
Then, a distinct rolling call urges me to look upward – sandhill cranes. Finally I see them, flying in relaxed, synchronized formation overhead, rising and falling with the thermal lift. Another sign that perhaps spring is here to stay.
Back in our yard, the lawn is still a dried-brown, but here and there, tinges of green are beginning to show. It might only be the quack-grass revolting against winter, but nonetheless it is a welcome change.
It is remarkable what one small rain can do. More growth and change is yet to come, but spring is now poised to make an entrance. And it finally feels like winter is headed out the backdoor.