by Bill Nye
Public Domain Books
Spring is now here. It has been here before, but not so much so, perhaps, as it is this year. In spring the buds swell up and bust. The “violets" bloom once more, and the hired girl takes off the double windows and the storm door. The husband and father puts up the screen doors, so as to fool the annual fly when he tries to make his spring debut. The husband and father finds the screen doors and windows in the gloaming of the garret. He finds them by feeling them in the dark with his hands. He finds the rafters, also, with his head. When he comes down, he brings the screens and three new intellectual faculties sticking out on his brow like the button on a barn door.
Spring comes with joyous laugh, and song, and sunshine, and the burnt sacrifice of the over-ripe boot and the hoary overshoe. The cowboy and the new milch cow carol their roundelay. So does the veteran hen. The common egg of commerce begins to come forth into the market at a price where it can be secured with a step-ladder, and all nature seems tickled.
There are four seasons–spring, summer, autumn and winter. Spring is the most joyful season of the year. It is then that the green grass and the lavender pants come forth. The little robbins twitter in the branches, and the horny-handed farmer goes joyously afield to till the soil till the cows come home.–Virgil.
We all love the moist and fragrant spring. It is then that the sunlight waves beat upon the sandy coast, and the hand-maiden beats upon the sandy carpet. The man of the house pulls tacks out of himself and thinks of days gone by, when you and I were young, Maggie. Who does not leap and sing in his heart when the dandelion blossoms in the low lands, and the tremulous tail of the lambkin agitates the balmy air?
The lawns begin to look like velvet and the lawn-mower begins to warm its joints and get ready for the approaching harvest. The blue jay fills the forest with his classical and extremely au revoir melody, and the curculio crawls out of the plum-tree and files his bill. The plow-boy puts on his father’s boots and proceeds to plow up the cunning little angle worm. Anon, the black-bird alights on the swaying reeds, and the lightning-rod man alights on the farmer with great joy and a new rod that can gather up all the lightning in two States and put it in a two-gallon jug for future use.
Who does not love spring, the most joyful season of the year? It is then that the spring bonnet of the workaday world crosses the earth’s orbit and makes the bank account of the husband and father look fatigued. The low shoe and the low hum of the bumble-bee are again with us. The little striped hornet heats his nose with a spirit lamp and goes forth searching for the man with the linen pantaloons. All nature is full of life and activity. So is the man with the linen pantaloons. Anon, the thrush will sing in the underbrush, and the prima donna will do up her voice in a red-flannel rag and lay it away.
I go now into my cellar to bring out the gladiola bulb and the homesick turnip of last year. Do you see the blue place on my shoulder? That is where I struck when I got to the foot of the cellar stairs. The gladiola bulbs are looking older than when I put them away last fall. I fear me they will never again bulge forth. They are wrinkled about the eyes and there are lines of care upon them. I could squeeze along two years without the gladiola and the oleander in the large tub. If I should give my little boy a new hatchet and he should cut down my beautiful oleander, I would give him a bicycle and a brass band and a gold-headed cane.
O spring, spring, You giddy young thing.
[Footnote 1: From poems of passion and one thing another, by the author of this sketch.]