Thursday, March 09, 2006

Spring snow and croccusses

Pure white feathers fell from the sky, one by one, like extra-large snow flakes that covered the ground a few days ago. It oculdn't have been snow, the air was too warm, too spring-like for snow. The feathers landed on the yet leafless bush in someone's front yard, and I noticed many more trapped among the intricacy of the shrubbery. I looked up puzzled. The feathers poured from a point in a tall tree, where two branches grew in their separate ways. Something moved behind one of the branches. I walked a few steps to get a better view. It was a small hawk, white throat and belly with dark brown spots, feeding on a pigeon. As it picked the fluffy mass at its talons, more and more white feathers, no, they were now softer downs, came flowing down to the shrubbery, to the ground. Tiny sparrows chirped in the tree a few feet from the grim feast. The hawk buried its compact head in the invisible flesh of the pigeon, probably still warm and tender. It seemed miraculous that none of the many, many feathers and downs did not bear the bloody mark of the violent death.


I saw the spring on that day. Three yellow croccusses had pushed their heads through the previously fridged soil, appearing right next to the apartment door. Daffodils had grown to a few inches tall, their cream-green flower buds still tucked in their leaf-wrapped stems. The air was moist and mild, making me roll down the window of my car on the way home. The yellow of the willows seemed to have intensified in the last few days.


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