In the sunniest spot, near a sheltering wall,
galianthus blooms. A single cluster, glowing white
against dirt still grey with winter’s slight
accumulation: leaves and slush and all.
Further down, brave green shoots emerge
but half an inch, and stop, frozen in place;
we halt in that indeterminate space
one foot most eager, raised and on the verge –
the wind says no, cutting sharp and cold,
shoves us back; our fall will break a tender bud
on forsythia branch. Our quickened blood
slows down again; we fear we will grow old
waiting for spring, suspended on a taken breath.
It’s hard, this day, to trust in life renewed – not death.
March 20, 2013