THE VERNAL EQUINOX

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Each year the Earth on its countless rounds

Quietly slides past that point in Space

When Day and Night have equal hours;

And, in the North we know that this will bring

A silent cataclysm; the miracle of Spring!

 

On dry brown stems, tiny buds appear

Clusters of little needles on pines get bigger,

Disciplined dog flowers line up in panicles

Impatient pansies twitching, their juices urging

Bloom, splash your colours, Times changing!

 

Further away, on edges of fields, leafless trees

Decide; we need new clothes, each to his kind,

And soon enough, as if overnight, The Tailor of Spring

Has woven delight; Reddish, green and hues in between,

Mantles that change color till the next Equinox.

 

Birds that fled winter begin to re-appear, like

Early tourists, of mischievous intent but with no Plan,

Forgetful Tree Pies digging for nuts they buried last year.

Bulbuls and sparrows that braved the Cold, keen to mate,

Dart about, jerk their heads, undecided on who to Date.

 

Our farmers’ friend, those earnest earthworms

For some strange reason are taken by a suicidal urge

Slowly but surely, to twist and wriggle and emerge

For a breath of fresh air that Spring holds aplenty,

At risk of being a noodle in the beak of some bird!

 

The days get longer and humans too rejoice,

A bounce in the step, a song in the heart,

The rhythms of Nature, strong and upbeat

Unleash a primeval Spirit and many doors unlock,

Such is the alchemy of Vernal Equinox!

Nodnat – is a pen name that the writer with deep knowledge of Himalayan flora and fauna and a keen environmentalist has adopted. He hails from Kotgarh, in Shimla Hills and retired as Principal Chief Conservator of Forests from Himachal Pradesh forest department.

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