Spring is here, and this season just happens to be one of my personal favorites and always has been. Perhaps it is because of where I was born and raised in Upstate New York — and I mean way upstate. I can remember every year while I lived there snow would pile up six feet high, and the temperatures would linger around the 30s and often below zero for months at a time.
Walking to school every morning was an exercise in endurance and mental fortitude. Imagine getting out of your comfy bed in the morning, leaving the heat of the insulated house, to be greeted with howling frigid winds and drifting snow. I would dress like an Eskimo in the heaviest jacket I could find, hood in place and a scarf around my face, with only my peering eyes exposed. It wasn’t so much that the season of winter bothered me; but rather the fact I had to walk to school in it.
After school homework finished was a different story. Sledding, road hockey, building igloos, skating on frozen ponds…these were the things my childhood memories were made of.
There was another major downfall to all of this for me though: sickness. It seemed as though I always had a cold, sore throat or some major flu symptom going on. That is why when the icicles slowly started dropping off of the house eaves and puddles formed on the roadways and fields, I knew my beloved spring was close at hand.
The monotony of a landscape of solid white would slowly give way to one of water and mud. The newly exposed earth would smell like manure after sitting dead and stagnant for months under a heavy pile of frozen precipitation.
It is this water and mud that would remind my mother’s sleeping tulips and crocuses to once again awaken and come to bloom. My world became colorful and green. The winds were now warm and the sun shown longer in smiling blue sky. My health grew better and I was alive and free.
It is this coming alive that always made springtime my favorite. The vibrant colors and warmth gave birth to song and dance. Not a bad thing for a singer/songwriter.
I find the season changes to be conducive to my song writing. A song is like giving birth. Every lyric and note is a new life unto itself, individual and complete. The finished composition is your child.
Spring is the coming, too, and for me personally that is my time of awakening, personal growth and freedom. Spring inspires my song.
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