Springtime In Your Eye
I know, you thought it would never get here.
Even though for many weeks the thermometer refused to creep up, and many of us (me!) were walking around hunched into jackets we had come to hate, Spring calmly went about its business: the vernal witch-hazel unfurled its yellow tatters in the March wind, maples were open for sap business, red-wing blackbirds buzzed in the marshes, and finally—in what has to be my favorite part of the season—the Spring peepers shook off their long, cold slumber and announced themselves. Hello, peepers! Hello Spring!
To celebrate, here’s a small poem that’s easy for even younger kids to learn. It speaks to that waiting we were all doing, and that moment when the wheel finally turns and all of a sudden, Spring is standing on our doorstep, acting like we were the ones dragging our feet. Plus, it has a good amount of silliness at the end that feels just righting for blowing away those cold March winds.
And Suddenly Spring
by Margaret Hillert
The winds of March were sleeping.
I hardly felt a thing.
The trees were standing quietly.
It didn’t seem like spring.
Then suddenly the winds awoke
They raced across the sky.
They bumped right into April,
Splashing springtime in my eye.
This is a great one for saying out loud. Say it while you’re kids are on the swings, making sure you catch them or they jump at that last line, or make it into a hand-clapping game—with all the rhymes and its regular beats, it’s a natural.
I found this poem in a collection called, The Sky Is Full of Song. It’s a little book of seasonal poems selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins with lovely woodcut illustrations by Dirk Zimmer. Poets included range from Lucille Clifton to Richard Brautigan, and it’s a good way to introduce kids ages 4-8 or so to a wide range of poets and styles. Sadly, it’s now out of print, but used copies are available. If you can find one, snatch it up!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Amy’s the mother of two children who seem to enjoy poetry, for which she’s extremely grateful. Her first book, How I Got Lost So Close To Home, was published by Alice James Books and poems have appeared in a variety of anthologies and journals. She’s a former Associate at the Five College Women’s Studies Research Center at Mt. Holyoke College, where she looked at the impact of motherhood on the work of women poets. In addition to her life as a poet, Dryansky works for a land trust, teaches in at Hampshire College, leads workshops in the community and writes about what it’s like to navigate the territory of mother/poet/worker at her blog, Pokey Mama. Her second book, Grass Whistle, is forthcoming from Salmon Poetry in 2013.
[Photo credit: (ccl) H. Michael Miley]