It was about a week or so today that the first color of spring first burst upon us by the fence line in the backyard. The two willows which we had planted when we first moved into our new home a few years have back have grown from a foot high to at least eight feet. Both of them were proudly sporting their full blooms of pink and white flowers that stood in contrast against the still-leafless trees of the forest. At first sight, they looked very much like the light coating of the first snow of a season that paints every branch of the willows with a delicate white.
In the week since, the March of the blooms has been held back a bit with the weather going back and forth between winter and spring like a kid trying to master their new yo-yo. As a result, the hydrangeas are lying in wait for a consistent warmup before they will set forth their colors. After a couple of initial sightings, the orange breasted blackbirds have also seemingly slowed their migration to the backyard forest from the South. It has been left to the mallard ducks to add color to the local lake with their brilliant blues shining amid the many pairs of nesting geese.
The myriad colors of the season may be delayed, but I am sure that they won’t be denied. Like the Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore wrote in his “Song of the Bird”
O Flame of the Forest, All your flower-torches are ablaze; You have kissed our songs red with the passion of your youth.
In the spring breeze the mango-blossoms launch their messages to the unknown And the new leaves dream aloud all day.
It is only a matter of time that the ‘flame of the forest’ shall kindle the hearts of the birds and along with them, we shall see that ‘the flower-torches are ablaze’. The birds’ songs will be ‘kissed red by the passion of spring’, and the ‘leaves shall dream aloud all day.’ Isn’t it wonderful that we can trust the poets of the world to remind us that we can find color in any season if we choose to let poetry into our hearts? What would our lives be like if we allowed ourselves to add more color to our lives through art, prose, theater, dance and so much more that enlivens us?
Spring is as good a time as any to add more color to our lives than we currently may be enjoying. If you need an excuse to dive headlong into more color, perhaps consider the Indian festival of colors – Holi – which falls on the full moon day (March 7/8) this year. Wear some colorful clothes, splash some virtual paint on some screens, write a verse or few of poetry with a theme of your choosing, break out some real crayons or paint brushes, share some sweets with a neighbor and more. In short, do whatever will bring a bit of lightness and playfulness to your heart. That’s what a sense of color can do for our spirit.
It can make us feel like ‘mango-blossoms (that) launch their messages to the unknown’. Who knows — we may even pause the asking of questions and simply immerse in the colors of spring for a moment.
P.S. Join us for our weekly gathering and conversation on twitter in #SpiritChat, Sunday March 5 at 9amET. We will share some colors with each other – bring your favorite pieces of poetry, artwork, artists, and more to share. I will bring some questions and treats. Namaste – @AjmaniK