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Poor Will's Almanack: April 14 – 20, 2020

Tony Alter
Flickr Creative Commons

Here on the cusp of April, one might use any number of seasonal markers to imagine the progress of Middle Spring. Beginning with daffodils today in the Ohio Valley, a person could, for instance, say that the road to May was really the road south past fresh honeysuckle leaves, dandelion blossoms, and forsythia flowers, past the blossoming pear trees, redbuds, and crab apple trees of the Carolinas, then the open dogwoods of Georgia, and ending finally with azaleas in New Orleans.

The distance south to of about 800 miles from the Lower Midwest is a calendar journey of about 30 days.

To the sun and the tilt of the earth, time is space. If we made the trip today, we could measure miles by the color of the landscape. We could watch Ohio or Pennsylvania days speed by us until we almost reached summer.

But even if we cannot or do not travel physically to accelerate the expanse between our first daffodil and our first azalea, the span of April can traversed within our desire, and we walk outside and actually see and touch the budding pieces of the world that are connected, as we are, to the inevitable, moving world in full bloom.

This is Bill Felker with Poor Will’s Almanack. I’ll be back again next week with notes for the fourth week of Middle Spring. In the meantime, go outside and feel yourself connected all the way South to summer. After all, geographic space is really just time, and time is only in your mind.

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Bill Felker has been writing nature columns and almanacs for regional and national publications since 1984. His Poor Will’s Almanack has appeared as an annual publication since 2003. His organization of weather patterns and phenology (what happens when in nature) offers a unique structure for understanding the repeating rhythms of the year.