Finally, the windows are open wide. The fragrance of fresh wildflowers and damp earth flow through them, and suddenly, so too does the hooting happiness of a pair of owls singing in our backyard trees.
To hear their music better, I leave my lazy nest of blanket and books and step out into the dark night. Warm moist air embraces me like a hug from an old friend. Shining stars and a sliver of silver moon hanging low over the treetops surprise me with their brilliance. Immediately, words from the Song of Solomon come to mind: “For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.”
But on this newly minted spring evening, I celebrate not only the end of winter, but also the fact that the dozens of screaming sirens that woke me early in the morning responding to a potential shooter at our local high school turned out to be a false alarm. The supposed man carrying a rifle was instead a boy with a bat, ready for a baseball game. And lo, when the panic was past, and the fear was over and gone, a time of rejoicing was heard in our land.
Perhaps that is why this night seems particularly precious to me, full of new beginnings instead of endings. Perhaps that is why an ordinary baseball game and other youthful rites of spring seem like such extraordinary blessings. Perhaps that is why in this world of worry that we live in, an ordinary night heralding the arrival of spring comes across as a miracle.
I thank the owls for reminding me.
Photo Credit: SUSAN STEPHENS / WNIJ