March 15, 2014
if i had wings like noah’s dove, i’d fly the river
I went out into the backyard and there on the horizontal post were the mourning doves. They had come back.
But their nest in the Mulberry tree was long gone. The winter winds scattered the loose twigs.
Mourning doves mate for life. Is the one on the right the female? And is she ready to nest?
This morning I went looking for the snowdrops, but found no evidence of spring. In the side-yard, the early Galanthus would poke their heads above the snow-cover and remind me that long winter was waning. This evening the mourning doves soothed my disappointment. In the soft setting sun, their coos announced the fledgling season.
The dove posting from last year is dated May 9 and here they are back two months early.
I was in a monastery garden in Cambridge Mass when I spotted a regiment of snowdrops rigid against the basement wall. Seeing them reminded me that I had lost my bulbs in the dig for the new sewer. The heralds of spring were silenced when the flower-bed on the side of the house was demoed in order to dig down to replace the terracotta pipes that drained the sink, the toilets, the bath. So last October, I replanted fifty bulbs hoping to regrow my heralds. I planted them among the blueberry bushes and while I was at it, I buried tens of crocus bulbs in the same bed.
It never occurred to me that the mourning doves would announce the new spring.