April on The Dandelion Farm; everything is flooded and muddy; the sky is a blank page. The California quail are still here and they’re beginning to sing, and the rufous hummingbirds are back – the males buzzing in dive-bomb displays. The first of the dandelions have even bloomed.

But the weather fluctuates day to day, hour to hour, minute to minute, from warm sun to snow and hail, and then rain, as though all four seasons can be compressed into a few moments. I started my tomatoes over a month ago, and have carried them to the greenhouse each morning and back inside each night, hoping this small ritual will cause spring to bloom a little earlier. I sowed snap peas in early March, and yesterday, erected a six foot fence for them to climb up, even though they have yet to break the earth: more hope, I suppose.

And today, that blank page of sky seems full of potential; time stops for a moment by a window, as I take a break from labor on the farm. A blue cat snores beside me. Wine-colored finches alight in the willow. The red currant flowers so bright, it almost hurts to look. But I look. Again and again.

Patrick Loafman

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