I’m keeping company with a cat named Goose while his people are away. Today we stepped outside: “He is very food motivated and always comes back for treats,” I’d been assured.
Goose stayed close, running and pouncing (though more on my hands than on leaves). I sat on a little boardwalk built over a rivulet of spring melt. I walked the beams of the raised bed gardens. I picked a dried daisy stalk for Goose to chase back and forth until he got the best of it. And I listened to the spring peepers.
My friend’s annual trip had been delayed a whole month because of travel restrictions, and before she left she lamented missing this chorus of the frogs, the first buds of plants, the shift out of winter. So I picked up my phone and took a video of her yard: the glittering mini-creek, the pushing green growth under last year’s dead stalks, the blue sky, the late daylight, the joyful and hopeful birds, and the unceasing spring peepers: All of life calling itself back to itself. All of the world coming slowly, suddenly, joyfully awake. All of the difficulty and the delight that is transformation in a northern climate: ever a surprise, ever a relief, ever a resurrection realer than anything written in any book.
Long, long before the lovers fell silent, I called for Goose with a rattle of the treat box. Those frogs can and will stay at it all night, but domesticated human that I am, I take the vernal wild in doses.