With covid-19 restrictions in place limiting one's movement, I began to look carefully at my surroundings no further than 100 metres from the front door.
Like many other neighbourhoods, this small corner of Montreal had fallen quiet. What remained – idle or abandoned tools and toys – hinted at daily lives previously filled with activity and accomplishment. Among my discoveries: a garden pruner that disappeared last October only to reappear as the snow receded (a lot worse for wear but with a patina – okay, it's just plain rust – that endows it with an artistic appearance); a broken clay pot on the balcony next door; and a decorative, butterfly wind vane pushed into a lawn, serving as a harbinger of better times to come.
Every day brings new signs of spring. Despite an occasional dusting of snow, nothing discourages crocuses that are blooming with gusto. At first some, now many branches are swollen with buds filled with the promise of foliage. More and more that promise is fulfilled. There is also a change in the quality of the light, from steadfastly neutral to imbued with warmth.
© 2020 Daniel Wiener