As a Florida girl, sometimes I admit the coming of spring is hard to appreciate. Fall is always the time I look forward to the most… the end of a brutal summer, the sweaters and blankets, shorter days and a glint of gold in the air. People say we don’t have seasons, and I guess that’s true to some extent. But there’s something in the air… we just know it.
Spring is always a close second though. And for the first time this year, I really understand what makes this time just as magical as October is to me.
This was the first winter in a really long time that I remember it being so cold. Bitter, chilling, straight-to-the-bones-can’t-get-warm cold. And I love it at first. I pull out the thickest sweaters, scarves and gloves, get giddy over frost on the ground. Even scraping ice off the windshield is kind of magical. (Remember. This is Florida we’re talking about.) Okay, a part of me felt sorry for my Northern friends and kept reminding myself this was nothing, but I secretly got happy for any leftover arctic air that came our way.
This is the first year I remember actually seeing snow in the forecast. Yes, one day in January, there was actually potential for some flakes. What? A dream come true! (I didn’t see any though. Alas.) I’m pretty sure that was the week of Heavy and Light, where after waiting for an hour outside House of Blues in 30 degree weather, I couldn’t feel my feet anymore and would’ve given anything for three more pairs of socks. (again, I hear my Northern friends laughing. it’s okay.)
So it went. And went. And somewhere, it wasn’t so fun anymore. I longed for warm weather and bright colors and the ability to leave the house without layers. I missed my Florida. I really did.
I understood why spring means so much.
So here it is, the first days of spring. Warmth is coming. The past few days have been some of the most perfect imaginable, with sun and just the right touch of coolness to remind me that winter isn’t quite done with us. I’ve come to think of spring as a sort of reverse fall, a melting, or perhaps, as a line from one of my favorite books says, “death itself… working backward.”
I love the beauty in these transition seasons. Somewhere between bitter cold and brutal heat, there is change, a tangible something in the air that feels like a resting place but is far from it. In one season, the leaves fall, and death appears to win but really the world is sleeping. And in the other, hope and life and rebirth start breaking through.
It’s this time of year when it’s easier to believe there’s something powerful, mysterious, bigger and stronger than I can imagine, turning death backwards and cracking the ice around our souls. And now, I’m more ready than ever.
Because I can’t help myself, here are a few albums that are my soundtrack to early spring. I think a couple are pretty obvious…
Jon Foreman * Spring EP
Yeah, thanks Captain Obvious. Oddly enough, it’s my second favorite of his four seasonal projects, Fall being first. No surprise there. But these songs really capture the essence of spring to me.
Jason Gray * Everything Sad is Coming Untrue
Again, if you listen to it, you know it’s fitting. Not just because there is so much spring imagery in the lyrics… but because these are songs of change and confession and growth and the darkness of the world melting away and bent things being made straight. Oh, I’m getting all poetic. This is good good stuff.
Gungor * Beautiful Things
I played this loud today. Normally, I’m not a huge fan of worship music… but this is just different. They call themselves “liturgical post-rock.” I call it epic. And with so many songs about coming to life and beautiful things springing from dust, it’s most fitting for this time of year.
* A special thanks to Jason Gray’s Rabbit Room essay “The Promise of Spring, The Fruits of Winter” for inspiring some of these springy thoughts. :)