The first spring sky. The first day I could really believe it was spring. Today I pruned my grape vine. This task is supposed to be done in late winter. Well, it’s late and it still feels like winter. Once I made the mistake of thinking it was too cold, or I got busy, or I just could not believe one should prune during a Quebec winter. I left it too late. I pruned on a sunny warm day in April. The sap poured out of the hollow stems of my beloved grape vine and I ran, in a panic to a garden store to buy some sort of glue, of filler, of fixative to clog up the thickest stems. A kind smiling man sold me an aerosol spray of tar that staunched the wounds. I managed to get spray tar all over my hands, the patio furniture and the flagstones. But the vine lived. I never made that mistake again.
So, today, although the snow, compacting under the strong sun did not always hold my weight, I pruned. I suddenly sank to my knees in the heavy snow, and on the next step to my thighs. The stray cats I have been feeding all winter looked on in consternation to see their walkway of twigs destroyed by the same hands that fed them every day during the bitter cold. All winter they picked their way over the bed of vines to make their way to my balcony. But now Spring is coming. The light is different and changes are coming.