Antedating Spirits
Thoreau's Journal: 2-Mar-1859

As I go through Cassandra Ponds, I look round on the young oak woods still clad with rustling leaves as in winter, with a feeling as if it were their last rustle before the spring, but then I reflect how faraway still is the time when the new buds swelling will cause these leaves to fall. We thus commonly antedate the spring more than any other season, for we look forward to it with more longing. We talk about spring as at hand before the end of February, and yet it will be two good months, one sixth part of the whole year, before we can go a-maying. There may be a month of solid and uninterrupted winter yet, plenty of ice and good sleighing. We may not even see the bare ground,and hardly the water, and yet we sit down and warm our spirits annually with distant prospect of spring. As if a man were to warm his hands by stretching them toward the rising sun and rubbing them.


Anonymous said...

the imagery is great and i would love o listento the author read it to do it justice, but alas i shall never meat him. i shall hope to see more of his work.


Cathy said...

Henry, I linked to this post in my own post today. I gave you the final word on Spring dreams.

Unknown said...

Thoreau explains how patience is a virtue in life. Even though winter time is between where he speaks of and spring, he knows that it is worth the wait to see how nice the springtime is.