the pine on the ridge
– Kobayashi Issa (translated by David G. Lanoue)
Yep, been a long time since we last saw the sun.
Four months of the same old depression-inducing grey skies and constant dampness that the Westcoast is famous for (Whale watching in January! Fun for the whole family!). Then, this last week life went a little storybook when light, warm breezes shooed all the clouds away and sunshine returned to our lives.
My little Zen garden sure knows it’s Spring! Photosynthesis! Equal parts chemical reaction and spiritual communion.
Crawling up from under densely-caked layers of dead leaves are thin, impossibly strong shoots of green. French thyme, lemon balm, savoury, fennel, and pastel eye-bombs like daffodils and crocuses. Everywhere I look there is life and colour, the air is perfumed with herbs. Man, I’m getting hungry!
A little Orzo with feta and fennel oil? Boiled spot prawns with dill and a squeeze of lemon? Or maybe just a simple salad of baby kale, herbs and pine nuts. Fresh, clean flavours and just a tad bitter… The essence of Spring.My deepest sympathies go out to my family in Southeastern Ontario who are even now trying to start their car on a frigid, salt-crusted Monday morning. Or, to my good buddy Kuma who is fighting to shovel his way out from under the deepest snowfall Northern Japan has ever suffered… No, like ever suffered in recorded history… Yeah man, we’re all praying for your safe return.
Now, I gotta get out into the sun and finish all the yard work that should have been done last Autumn.