I knew it would smell like spring when I stepped outside. The mixture of dew and dirt swirl together just beneath my nose as if I’m sniffing the bouquet of a fine wine. I let it swell for a moment, see how it settles over me. I give the spring morning a proper hello as I bow to pet a cat, then curtsy to pet the other nearby. All while balancing a brimming hot mug in my left hand. Then I run that free right hand down the clothesline until the rope burns just a bit. I walk briskly enough to not sink in the mud below — holding air, thinking my feet wider and myself lighter, so I am. And I remember that’s how I fly in my dreams. This secret thing I do to levitate and then take flight. I think myself small and weightless, pulling all inside somehow until my feet lift from the ground. Then, I quickly push it out all, that weight I just inhaled, and it creates a force between myself and the ground and I am propelled. I think it and then it is so.
How many times have I crumpled myself up into a wad of nothing in order to not be? To not exist? I wonder if people who dissociate also dream of flying? Am I some neurotic soul who thinks more of myself than I should? See how it can unravel so quickly (?) with one hand cupping a cooling mug, the other scooping rabbit food for bunnies tossing their metal bowl at my arrival. Rabbits don’t make much noise but they do communicate. You just have to listen differently. And now I’m sipping coffee finally, wishing I hadn’t missed when it was scalding hot because my throat and ears are itchy from this early spring and that would have soothed them nicely. There’s little that coffee can’t cure.
The cardinals are back and playful as ever. I know their song by heart, the way they dance after each other. They say birds are loudest in the spring for mating purposes and I guess these two are showing off as I stand statue still. They startle easier than greedy robins who don’t seem to care what anyone thinks. The quote, “If you’re a bird, I’m a bird,” runs through my head. Birds are just plain romantic. Did you know many cardinals mate for life? Or at least until one dies? This could very well be the same couple I see each year. If so, they seem to reintroduce themselves as though they have never been lovers. I almost feel as if I’m intruding, finishing the cold dregs of my coffee and ready for my ritual second.
Welcome, spring. You’re early.