For today’s “Celebrate” photo, I thought that I might be able to find a green sprout peeking out of my garden somewhere. I went outside and peered between the front bushes where the hostas often sprout early in the spring. I looked around the side of the house where ferns sometimes spring up. The area in front of the driveway where the bulbs are is still buried underneath several feet of crusty, sooty ice and snow. The few places where there was visible soil, there were no sprouts of green grass, no leaves getting ready to unfurl, no snowdrops about to burst into bloom. There was muddy dirt, and there was muddy snow. The only glimpse of green I could find was a manky old green sweatsock that had appeared in a melting snowbank a day or so ago, source unknown.
It was ugly against ugly, the filthy green against the filthy white. It certainly didn’t put me in the mind to celebrate. But as I glared at it in disgust, I realized that despite its ugliness, there was plenty of beauty around me. It was warm enough that I had come outside wearing a short-sleeved shirt and no coat. The rays of the sun had a golden quality that tinged the snowbanks with their glow and cast artistic shadows all over the yard. Dozens of different kinds of birds were singing happily in the trees. Overhead, a lazy jet made soft whooshing noises in the sky. Down the street, I could faintly hear the happy voices of boys playing street hockey. A neighbor walked by with his dog, softly whistling to her.
It’s not yet time to celebrate the re-awakening of the earth, the growth of the tiny green things, the rebirth of lawns and gardens. But it is time to celebrate the coming of spring: looking forward to those awakenings, to that growth, to the rebirth. There may not be baby birds, but there are eggs. There may not be sprouts, but there are seeds. There may not be spring, but there is anticipation. We can anticipate. We can hope. We can celebrate.