Around this time of year, I love to watch “Wild Palms“, the ultimate spring flick. The great character actor Robert Loggia can’t catch up with the pace of his imagination, which takes a devilish turn. It’s about life’s quickening quality—never catching up with itself—and our innate frustration with comprehending, much less understanding it.
I like spring—it’s scary without being terminal. The poets agonize over not their imminent death, but their impending immortality. “I face my approaching life with fear”, so to speak. Camus’ great lesson of “the terror of responsibility”. Or T.S. Eliot:
April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
“The Waste Land”
Similarly, we gardeners race to catch up with our plants and, as I tried to suggest in “Spring, Volume One“, never quite reach their liquid light speed. Though we come exquisitely close. I’m reminded of how the juggler wakes up in the morning in “The Seventh Seal“—opens his eyes, somersaults, kisses his baby, juggles, in more or less a few seconds.
I enjoy also spring fauna—the wide eyes of looming creatures behind bushes, between trees. Or at the windows begging us to come out and wondering what we’re doing inside. (Isn’t there a 20′ tall bear sculpture somewhere in the Northwest standing outside an office building, peering through the windows into the lobby?) Quite the opposite of fall and winter: “The lambs are at the door”.
Spring is an apocalypse of miracles. The casino of Paradise reopens and the sun hits the jackpot. Aces of light with a joker wild as a March hare.
I propose a new science: seasonology. It explores the conception and birth of all life—independent of evolution or creation. Think of it as a vocational school for creatures: animals, reptiles, fish, plants and the bugs and protozoa that love them and are, in season, loved by them.
A University of Utopia. St. Francis might’ve approved.