Between Seasons (Creative Prose.)
A time between the winter and the spring, when the air has started to warm, but only started. The sun resides with us longer into the day, but the ground has not yet been informed of the change.
That, or it is an arrival for which the soul and the long-browned grass refuse to prepare; their compulsory participation in the coming veridescence and warmth will be open them soon enough.
Yet for these few weeks, few days, the demonstrable yet no longer white-knuckle clutch of winter will not totally relinquish everything for another year.
Irregular piles of snow, protected for now by unknown science and chance hold out all over like forgotten Confederate battalions avoiding the inevitable Union sun.
These islands of cold encroach upon the dirt and mud of proto-spring, their ice-encrusted surfaces gleaming here and there in the almost no longer bashful sun.
Shards and slivers and crumbling miniature escarpments of snow checker warming rooftops with patchwork tundras. Smears gray cold oatmeal slush in forgotten divets and sidewalk panels in the shade, even as most of their brethren have long since fully liquefied.
Stand still, and hear the gentle dirge of all the trillion flakes that have succumbed–the multitudinous drips and plops from window sills and gutters and tree limbs. And the the burbling counterpoint of recent waters rushing down the street along the curb.
A mere rehearsal for the sun, which isn’t yet equipped to sear, instead in passing lays a friendly hand upon the shoulder, and leave a gentle warning not to shed the sweatshirt yet.
The air is now a cleansing agent, and old but pristine, grey, cool damp rag pressed against the forehead of the earth and her people as the winter fever breaks. Inhale the mineral purity of it’s absolute non-fragrance.
Still in it blows a winter’s NA; gulp too much and a cough will threaten yet.
Straight through the town amidst this interregnum of the seasons, to a granite bench across from which a broken statue of the Virgin Mary. Our Lady is a dirt streaked white as is the snow beneath her pedestal.
The empty church, without a congregation, up for sale behind her does not vex her. Nor does the snow and slush, the exposed iron framework of her damaged right hand-
The Agnostic sitting in his soaked-through jeans on the bench.
The tears from melting snow upon her head that cross her face.
Drip. Drip. Plop. Rush.
Drip. Drip. Plop. Rush.