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Perspective: Practice acceptance. Don't push the river.

Susan Stephens

“April is the cruelest month,” T.S. Eliot wrote in the opening line to The Wasteland.

Eliot's first line continues, “Breeding lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain.” Many in this part of the Midwest were feeling the trickery and treachery of April this past week.

A silent snow fell overnight, and we woke to black branches laced with its white ribbon. Our tulip leaves shined green beneath their white furry caps. Such a spring morning surprise always reminds me of my father's childhood memory he shared with me every spring. It was about the Easter when he was 10 in 1918, the largest snowfall of his youth, the snow was so deep, they were able to take a horse and sleigh ride across fields over the buried fences.

March and April are known as the shoulder months, the in between time as one season bleeds into another. There is a push and pull as winter keeps coming back to dampen our spring hopes. Nature is saying big change is a gradual process. Practice acceptance. Embrace it all. Life is always a mixture of pain and sorrow, as well as celebration and hope. Life is all an ever-flowing river that we cannot push but need to learn to go with its flow. One day's frustration will soon give way to the next day's hope.

Dan Kenney is a retired elementary school teacher and the founder of DeKalb County Community Gardens. He's also a published poet and writer.