This is the most beautiful spring of my life.

The flowers are bursting, the air is redolent and clean, and it is so quiet I hear birds far overhead and bees buzzing in the garden.

And, in the same moment, I feel dissonance.

Hey wait a minute, isn’t there a catastrophe afoot? Aren’t l sad and heavy. Aren’t I afraid? What about the kids?

And yet, I feel pure joy and gratitude as I look at an aeonium plurparum blooming yellow cones of splendor. (pictured below)

I am breathless as I examine the tender hanging chandeliers of a Strawberry Tree.

I am rapt when I see a hillside covered with Red Valerian and Scotch Broom and Pride of Madera, so vibrant and determined in their luster.

And then I remember, oh yeah, I am part of nature too.

I am also flowering in this spring.

I am also opening up to the air and the sky and the sun.

I am also alive and brilliant and fertile.

I am, like the flowers, exceedingly temporary: a moment, a pause in the breath of the universe.

I AM the spring. I AM nature.

I AM ONE with all of this.

I am ONE with ALL of this.

And then….

I forget again.

I read the news, I feel afraid and disconnected, my judgment arises.

At times I am hopeless, as if the floor fell out from under me, and I am, like Søren Kierkegaard, desperately treading water over 50,000 fathoms.

And then, I go for a walk and I remember, again, in this endless cycle of remembering and forgetting, of contraction and expansion, or grief and celebration.

I Am Spring.

I am on a mission to learn the names of plants and trees and flowers. I have always had a story that my brain doesn’t do that well, that I am not very taxonomically able.

There is some accuracy in this, yet the deeper and harder truth is I never really cared enough to learn.

I saw the plants and flowers as something over there, creatures apart from me like the animals in a zoo. They were not me. But this is my spring to start new stories for myself, and I am learning the names of things.

I hope you can all get out for a walk today, even in those places where spring is just beginning.

Because you are Spring too.

And we need you.

I will end with a favorite poem.

The Peace of Wild Things

by Wendell Berry


When despair for the world grows in me

and I wake in the night at the least sound

in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,

I go and lie down where the wood drake

rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.

I come into the peace of wild things

who do not tax their lives with forethought

of grief. I come into the presence of still water.

And I feel above me the day-blind stars

waiting with their light. For a time

I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

Bee well and enjoy the spring dear friends, and if you have a favorite plant or flower or tree to share, please write!

Dave Klaus

King Bee, Fire-Tender