Cherry blossoms, those delicate pinky-white blossoms burst into life and fall seemingly without provocation. Redbuds create a Jimi Hendrix experience along creek banks. Wild dogwood throw out ivory blooms dancing in understory in the woods. Maple and oak pollen paints everything a greenish-yellow. And trees put forth their first green leaves.
Have you ever really looked at those first leaves? They aren't the deep green of summer. They are bright, fresh and light. Japanese has a word for this color: new green. Nothing in my mind describes it better.
For a day I was filled with the glory of spring, new life, poetic images.
Dark reality intruded on two fronts. First, there was the bombing at the Boston Marathon. Lengthy reporting and speculation. Blood pools on the sidewalk. People being carried to the safety of ambulances. The same scenes on every network newscast. Two suspects. One dead. One captured alive. So many lives ruined.
Next came the news that my best friend's son had been arrested for DUI. He'd just started a new job. An arrest wasn't going to help him keep it. Turns out it wasn't DUI. It was possession of heroin. This young man had just royally screwed up his life. His court appearance is later this week. No one knows what's going to happen.
No one knows why two young men in Boston did what they did. We all want answers to "why?" Maybe we will get them. Maybe not. Why can't always have an answer. Sometimes, the only answer we get is "I don't know." My friend's son can't tell us why he was in possession of heroin. If he's convicted, he'll have a felony on his record. At 23.
And still spring continues. More flowers bloom. More pollen falls. More signs of new life. Mallards have nested again in the cove. Blue herons stand in stately watch in tree tops. Woodpeckers frolic and fight over nesting places.
Spring brings symmetry with its return every year. So does violence when we least expect it. So do young men who make decisions that will follow them throughout their lives.
Let us reflect on the good, understand the evil and help the less fortunate. I think I'll go meditate by the water's edge for a while...