I used to say of Minnesota that the air was made fresh again in the spring. All the old winter air was gone, I averred. It was all brand new. The soft mists above the melting snow, the clear air in the greening valleys, the air coming through my open window at night; it was all clean, unbreathed yet.
Lanier Ivester said, at a conference last weekend, “I think we are all homesick for a garden.” Ohhhh I think so too. I walk and walk down the streets, past the blooming yards in our neighborhood. The purple lilacs are beginning to flower and I pause by them wherever I find them, just breathing, smelling.
I remember reading The Two Towers and hearing in my mind the deep voice of Treebeard saying “I used to spend a week just breathing.” Yes – I could spend a week just breathing the springtime air.
Tonight was soft and fresh from a scattered rain. The wind was blowing cool off the treetops and I sat outside even in the late afternoon damp chill to enjoy the wet, fresh scents. It was lovely to sit here, in my dry, desert state and remember the freshness of a spring season in my childhood. I think we are all homesick for a garden, a garden in the springtime air.