The main river is not yet open but in very few places, but the North Branch, which is so much more rapid, is open near Tarbell’s and Harrington’s, where I walked today, and flowing with full tide bordered with ice on either side, sparkles in the clear, cool air, —a silvery sparkle as from a stream that would not soil the sky.
Half the ground is covered with snow. It is a moderately cool and pleasant day near the end of winter. We have almost completely forgotten summer. This restless and now swollen stream has burst its icy fetters, and as I stand looking up it westward for half a mile, where it winds slightly under a high bank, its surface is lit up here and there with a fine-grained silvery sparkle which makes the river appear something celestial, —more than a terrestrial river,— which might have suggested that which surrounded the shield in Homer. If rivers come out of their icy prison thus bright and immortal, shall not I too resume my spring life with joy and hope? Have I no hopes to sparkle on the surface of life’s current?