Were it not for the high winds in February, the snow would be gone now. Instead, foot-deep drifts still rot in the sun.
Otherwise, it’s turning out to be an early spring. Thirty feet from the nearest snowdrift, the first wildflower — a coltsfoot — was out this afternoon, its rays seemingly taking their cues from the sun’s glittering reflection in the adjacent ditch.
Up on the ridgetop, the first butterflies had emerged from wherever they spent the winter — presumably under loose flaps of bark, or in hollow logs — and were sunbathing in the middle of the old woods road. I had the rare pleasure of witnessing a fight between
a Compton’s tortoiseshell an eastern comma and a mourning cloak, though I wasn’t quick enough to capture it on film. I’m not sure what they were fighting about. There seemed to be plenty of dead leaves and bare twigs to go around.
I thought of the other insect life that must be stirring all around us, the buds swelling, the seeds beginning to sprout. Tomorrow will bring more arrivals and emergences, I’m sure, and by the end of the week — if the weather predictions are correct — the first spring orgies should be breaking out among the local garter snakes and wood frogs. It all happens so fast. Part of me is still wishing I’d gotten one more sled run in.