I’ve said before that I hate spring, and I do.
This is not the climate or location for it, even in the best years.
For the longest time, I thought the smoke from all of the wildfires was just the usual dust blowing in the air, the brown particle overcast of West Texas common to the season. It’s too dry to keep down the dirt, and that’s true, yet it’s now too dry for there to be much left unburnt except for dust, it sometimes seems lately.
But rain eventually will come and all hundreds of thousands of acres of ashen death will soak in to the soil, having paid the ultimate price of someone else’s sinful stray cigarette, careless electrical wiring or blameless lightning sent by God to do only what it does: crackle in the sky and sometimes start fires at ground.
The fires have burned for 10,000 years across hill and plain, and it’s doubtful they’ll stop just for us. So while it’s here, let’s enjoy it.
How beautiful! How magnificent! The abundant flamey pornography does excite the eyes and mind so. (“Look at that, the whole mountain near McDonald Observatory looks like lava, like a volcano or something, my God!”)
Looking at the aftermath, looking at photos from Possum Kingdom Lake that resemble the scenery from Cormac McCarthy’s “The Road,” with more gasoline and less cannibals, it’s tougher to delight in what the wages of exciting flames buy.
But rain eventually will come, and fertilized by plant and animal corpses, all hundreds of thousands of acres will burst forth with green shoots — grass and weeds, first, then maybe flowers. And later mesquite will take it all back.
As always, the world belongs to the yet unborn, or reborn.
Oh, that’s right: it’s resurrection Sunday.
Well, I hate spring, and today is possibly my least favorite holiday of the year, in its trappings.
In a phrase, Easter is the eunuch pole-dancer of the calendar.
In a word, it’s sad.
I’m not a fan of the bunny, that awful egg-laying hare. A mascot dripping with muted reproduction, lacking only the many-breasted abdomen common to Eastern and European goddesses. It’s the sterilization of the fertility celebration, except instead of orgy, children go look for colored eggs. People who refuse to acknowledge Halloween will cheerfully partake in this.
There’s more to the holiday than lecherous hopping infertility, thankfully.
We have the Christ, and the death, and the resurrection. We eat and drink and think about death and new life, eating and drinking.
And we remember the world is borrowed, and try, like the good and faithful servant, to make better on what we’ve been entrusted with before we hand it off to the next crop coming up.
People don’t have children to make the world better; often life comes as unexpected as death. Nor, often, do children themselves make the world better.
But, as little else does, they give motivation to strive to ensure our children will do better than we did, have more than we did, suffer less than we have. People with souls have this motivation, rather.
So each spring we try to leave behind us the death we’ve laid down, the death of the ground, and rise to walk in the greener pastures and newness of life, for our own lives, others, and the life yet to come.