The forest floor is littered with maple flowers.
Look down anywhere and you’ll see the pink with purple specks brightening up the leaf litter. Waylon and I spent ten minutes in one spot just last week, picking up flowers and placing them on our open palms, counting. It was only a promise of more maple flowers up ahead that loosened his wonderment enough to move along the trail.
Yesterday I set out with the dogs alone, no toddler slowing my pace to that of constant discovery. I needed to get into the woods, up the steep old logging road, over the brook and small pool that releases into a fall, across the elevated traverse among ash and maple and beech before I slowed. I needed to let my legs move so that my mind might begin to move, too—it was my morning for writing, and no words were coming out.
Instead, all I could I hear was Paul Simon in my head, singing The Only Living Boy in New York.
Over and over one line repeated: I get the news I need from the weather report. I can gather all the news I need from the weather report.
It occurred to me that part of the weather report is in watching the sky, in walking in the woods, in learning how to smell the change of air pressure. It occurred to me that the weather has been bombarding us with news forever. Long before satellites and the weather channel, the wind carried information, clouds grew into mountains, maple blooms fell to the ground.
Right now, wind is carrying information, clouds are growing into mountains, maple blooms are falling to the ground.
Right now, a coopers hawk hunts over our field.
Right now, it’s raining and seeds are softening their shells to sprout and the air is moving slow.
It’s all I need to know.