The tree-trunks begin early April the same grey-brown as the bare granite. The carpet of autumn leaves has been bleached tan. Only the odd pine tree gives color along the horizon.
Then comes a faint pinkening. The first buds, contrary to Robert Frost's lovely poem, are scarlet.
The tone of grey morphs so subtly –– and so improbably –– into this first color of spring that it's quite possible to see it for half a lifetime before recognizing the hue.
I mean, really -- red?
A closer look provides the evidence. American elms splash out in red buds, delicious to the porcupine.
I know, blurry. Here's maybe a better image:
And in the beleaguered new apple orchard, after a winter spent as an hors d'oervers station for the local deer, the first tiny signs of vegetable life look like droplets of blood. Or maybe like those wee scarlet spiders that live in old leaves. Spider mites.
A pinhead speck of cardinal-red on the sticks of apple saplings, but not crawling. Tragically out-of-focus when I snapped their picture on the single afternoon when they first appeared. Overnight, they grew into what you expect in a bud:
Mr. Frost ends his lovely poem with "Nothing gold can stay."
I agree, except as I see it, it's nothing pink that can stay.
*April is not just "the cruellest month/breeding. Lilacs from dead ground" –– it's Poetry month.
About the Blog
A lot of ground gets covered on this blog -- from sailboat racing to book suggestions to plain old piffle.
Trying to keep track? Follow me on Facebook or Twitter or if you use an aggregator, click the RSS option below.
Old school? Sign up for the newsletter and I'll shoot you a short e-mail when there's something new.