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It wasn't a particularly hard winter that year, but it was long and dreary and colorless. No wonder then that, when the first winds of March blew warm breath across the land and the land began to green, the wild creatures on four feet, and on the wing took notice.
The first creature, small brown mouse sat back on her haunches and smelled the warm air. She knew what this meant—the green time was coming and the first small shoots of grass which tasted so very good would begin to show themselves. "Aaaahh" sighed the small brown mouse, "tender grass to nibble on and to line my nest for my babies."
The small brown mouse was not the only creature glad to smell spring in the air. The fuzzy-tailed squirrel scampered to and fro, up and down the trees. He paused a moment to watch a sparrow and her mate work on their nest. Mrs. Sparrow wanted to line the nest with soft lint and grass in a particular way. Mr. Sparrow was getting tired of her bossing, and soon he flew off and hid behind a daffodil, which was nodding in the breeze. Fuzzy-tailed squirrel shook his tail, and scampered off. He remembered a spot where he had hidden a particularly juicy horse chestnut. He hoped that the little brown mouse had not found it.
High overhead, nighthawk surveyed the land. His favorite tree was still there, and his neighbor fuzzy-tailed squirrel was there too. He passed his winters far to the south, but he was always glad to return to his home. The trees were all fuzzy and green with baby leaves, and the flowering trees were bright with colored petals. And over there were the daffodils, waving and nodding to him.
The warm spring sun shone down upon the land, upon the grass that glowed with green vigor, upon the little brown mouse as she put the finishing touches on her next and upon the daffodils too. The sun gave warmth to the wings of the nighthawk as he soared upon the wind and beamed upon the sparrow family as they worked, a bit more cooperatively this time, on their nest. The sun gleamed at the fuzzy-tailed squirrel as he scampered about. It even glittered upon the pond far below.
Down in the deep quiet of the pond, where the water never quite froze, even in deep midwinter, the warmth of the sun began to heat the water until, suddenly, the frogs popped out of their winter mud nests! Tadpoles began to swim in the sun-warmed pond, and they dreamed of jumping high into the air to see the grass at the edge of their world. The peepers joined the chorus, and the pond added music to the colors of spring.
And there, in the musical, colorful world, where the grass was green and the daffodils nodded in the breeze, where the tadpoles dreamed and swam in the warm waters of the pond, and where fuzzy-tailed squirrels scampered in the trees as the nighthawk settled into his tree while the sun shone on down, the little brown mouse had her babies, the sparrows laid four eggs, and what had been the promise of spring became the fulfillment of it.
REACH Winter 2001
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Last updated on Wednesday, February 27, 2013.
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