Down in the valley, the trees are a hazy red. Up where I stand, the bare boughs and branches are still stark, but with distance, the cloud of just fledgling leaves brushes the valley with redness.
The saplings in the woods are still decked with their old leaves. You can tell we have a wet and therefore cloudy winter; many are gold, pale or dark, and some are even bronze, and a small handful are white, but not the pure bridal white of many years -- an off-white, like a woman donning her great-grandmother's wedding gown.
All at once, all the crocuses decide to bloom with or without shelter from the weather, in bright oranges and purples -- especially the feral ones that spread over lawns.
Where the snow-melt runs off at the bottom of the hill, it still floods heavily. Indeed, I thought something had interposed, to make it fountain when the water hit an obstacle as I drove toward it. When I reached it, however, it was clear: a starling splashing all over the place as it bathed. Birds waited about for a chance to bathe there.
The landscaping has daffodils springing up all over where the flowerbeds are. Some are merely shoots, some are budding, and one sheltered nook the yellow flowers nodded.
The maples are flowering so far that you can see them just looking at the tree, rather than en mass in the valley -- but the only green is pale and delicate on the branches of shrubs beneath.
Along some roads, there is a haze of red from the maples, and underneath a haze of pale green from the scrubs. Broken by a willow tree in its green-tinged yellow.
Green grows under the trees as the forest floor sprouts and grows swiftly, before the tree leaves take up all the light.
One valley has, within a week, turned from dead leaves to greenery sprouting so thickly that no dead leaves can be seen. (Looking rather like lettuce, actually.)
The thunderhead is moving in, and the wind is picking up, blasting cold air and dust and everything loose before it. I am not quite at the door before I realize that the stinging solid things in the air are not dust at all. Once inside, I get to glance out the door and see a torrential downpour, looking white in the air. Minutes later, I come out to a few splatters of rain as the cloud ambles on, ready to pour on others.
Violets are blue, indeed; a soft blue, ribboned with white, among the spring grass.
One bleeding heart, after sprouting a bit, a thicket of little red shouts, abruptly one day burst out with leaves, and grew since in leap and bounds. Another is inching along with a few sprout. Those who have, get -- the more leaves, the more photosynthesis, the more leaf-building.
Driving along the country road, through hills of red and green -- red from budding maples, bright green streaks of pines running through them.
A garden store's air is filled with scent. All that sweet with that spicy edge from the leaves and the varying scents of the flowers.
A bumblebee hovers, surveying the garden; its only shifts come as it turns right and left, over the tulips and columbines and forget-me-nots.
Tulips with flowers like glowing coals -- down to the way the outside of the petals are brushed with blackness.
Lawns turning purple with gill over the ground and violets
Dandelions turning the lawns an impudent shade of yellow. Here and there wild mustard mitigating the yellow by their laciness.
The cherry trees are all abloom with pink, their frilly double petals making them look like rosy puff balls. The apples are still deep pink buds ensconces among the new green -- one beleaguered apple, with dead branches and lichen growing on it, has patches of life where the leaves and buds are thick. The crab-apple is not yet blooming, and its dark buds and dark leaves make it look like its striving for that impossible reddish green -- or greenish red.
A maple tree's flowers are so brownish for a moment I think they are unfallen but still dead leaves.
Two deer, their brown a subtle shade near gray, nibble on the leaves, eying the highway warily, but being up the slope from it, do not flee the torrents of cars.
The hills turn a patchwork of pale greens; then, on a cloudy days, they ripen to the darker shades of summer -- except that when the clouds clear, by afternoon, they still show the darker shades.
Flowering trees along the highway, with bunches of purple blooms hanging like pale clusters of grapes.
Two little rabbits, shades of brown and gray commingling subtly in their fur, neither one bigger than my hand, eying me, warily hop through the grass to under the prickly bushes.
Where they clear-cut the median, flame-red leaves spring: a maple, not dead yet, sent up a score of shoots, all with bright red leaves.
The daisies all bloom at once, it seems, flooding slopes with white blossoms.
Poppy buds look more like seed pods than buds, spherical, green, and fuzzy, drooping from their stalks.