Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Willow Tree, Early Spring, Pre-Dawn

The willow never loses all its leaves. It starts spring before it's quite done with winter. In the cool months, it loses most of its leaves, and those that remain turn raggedy and brown. But then, as the weather warms, it sprouts new little vivid green leaf-lets. And as the bright babies fill in, the last of last year's old-timers finally flutter off.

This process happens on different parts of the tree at different times, starting on the south side, the sunny side, where spring, in a sense, arrives first. The south side turns full fresh green while the north, few weeks behind, is still dingy sparse brown.

Right now, the willow is at its most wintry, just before the burst of spring begins. At night, it makes spare wind-whipped silhouettes against the sky.