Saturday, March 28, 2009

Lusty cooing, Harleys and getting gritty again

Oh, visit the earth, ask her to join the dance. Deck her out in spring showers, fill the God-River with living water. – Psalm 65:9-13 "The Message" Translation

Green shoots wait succulently beneath dusty fallen leaves. Above, the lusty cooing of a morning dove breaks the silence.

A woodpecker "rat-a-tat-tat" for food on a nearby tree while another flutters in flight.

Full-breasted male robins stake out their territory, caroling richly from their high perches. Later, they swoop down to loosen dirt in search of worms, which have not yet surfaced.

Brooks, streams, lakes and rivers break loose from the icy shackles of winter.

Once aggrieved flowerbeds sprout nubs of life.

Overhead, waterfowl, with their piercing cries, power northward, cranking hard on nature’s clock.

The hoarse honking of Canada geese announces the end of winter’s overly serious grip.

The old familiar "gobble-gobble-gobble" of wild turkeys

In the field across the way, the piping of a long-legged Kill Deer dancing around corn stubs and hopping over plow ruts.

A Blue Jay’s sharp warning offsets the melodic song of newly arriving red-winged blackbirds. Birds and more birds join the chorus. Buntings and Finches are not far behind.

We mimic nature. We shed our winter selves. We go outside without coats, hats, gloves.

We move about refreshing our own nests, sweeping our steps, scratching our gardens.

Our hands and faces get gritty again. Bursts of balmy air sweetly wash over us.

We hear the temperature rising in Harleys roaring along the highway. Like uncontained laughter to our ears, their rumbling engines sound as though any minute they may burst.

Children running, skipping, chasing in lingering daylight reclaim the outdoors after emerging from a long hibernation fed by electronic entertainment.

Sleeveless, they bike, skateboard, rollerblade, as though in flight, too. Hollering, shouting, calling, screaming.

Daylight lingers into early evening.

All the while, we talk back to January, February and most of March, which had moved us to such extremes.

Our dread is gone. Full-faced, we roll out hope.

The death of winter is behind us. We are young again. 2009©Copyright Paula Damon.

A resident of Southeast South Dakota, Paula Damon is a popular columnist and freelance writer. Her column writing has won first-place in National Federation of Press Women and Iowa Press Women Communications Contests. Recently, her work took second place in the South Dakota Press Women Communications Contests. To contact Paula Damon, email or comment on her blog at

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