Sunday, April 19, 2015

Ging heut Morgen übers Feld

I just returned from a most glorious morning spring rain walk. It seemed as if every single flower on every single tree was either in blossom, about to blossom, or was in the process of releasing its blossoms to the ground. Everything was quiet except for the sound of rain and the sound of birds.

The trees were simply drinking in the water, and I was protected by my umbrella and my rain boots. Every once in a while I would stop in front of a flowering tree and watch the movement happening in the tree. Though I didn't actually see it happen, I felt that the flowers were opening up before my eyes.

Early spring used to be a horrible time for me. I used to identify with the sentiments of the 24-year-old Gustav Mahler in his "Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen" when he asks,
Nun fängt auch mein Glück wohl an?
and answers
Nein, nein, das ich mein',
Mir nimmer blühen kann!

[When will my happiness start?
I believe it can never blossom]

Ging heut Morgen übers Feld

This morning my "Feld" was paved, and the things that were (and still are) blooming were planted by people who probably never imagined the amount of happiness their work could give to people who would probably never personally and directly thank them for making their corner of the world a beautiful and inspiring place. It doesn't matter if people thank you for your labors of love, and it is clearly not a thankless task to plant trees or flowers. It's also not a thankless task to write music. It's kind of the same thing for me.

Today I had vivid memories of the rain walks I took during my childhood. Could it have been the rubber boots on my feet (I haven't had rain boots since childhood)? I tried to figure out why this sudden embrace of spring joy has so strongly replaced my usual lousy "April is the cruelest month" feelings. Could it be the recovery from our overly-long winter? Could it be my mature (nearly 56-year-old) hormonal state?

For some reason the hormonal state thing seems to resonate. After I was no longer a child, and before I became a mother I used to have an annual February depression. I could count on it. But in 1987, when I gave birth to our daughter on January 28, my February was filled with joy and wonder. I was expecting some kind of postpartum depression, but there was none. The hormonal changes that happened during pregnancy seemed to change me permanently. All the Februarys since 1987 have been just fine, but my "funk" seemed to switch to the time of year when everything is blooming (and I am not).

So here I am, with my hormonal state almost transported to the way it was before I was a teenager, and I find myself singing. I am thrilled by the flowering trees. Instead of feeling "left out" I feel inspired to create.

1 comment:

Rachel said...

This brought tears to my eyes. Your joy is contagious! You spread it with your music and the love you put into everything you do. <#