For Happy Groundhogs and People, Spring Is On the Way

By Gabe Pressman
|  Thursday, Feb 10, 2011  |  Updated 5:15 PM EDT
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For you people weary of the ravages of this winter from hell, take heart from the words of the poet.

For centuries they’ve tried to reassure us that this kind of weather soon shall pass.

Perhaps Shelley said it best:  “If winter comes, can spring be far behind?”

Even Chuck the Staten Island Groundhog has gotten into the spirit. This mayor-biting creature behaved himself this year. He was relatively patient as the photographers snapped his picture. He didn’t see his shadow, meaning winter was over, and he didn’t bite anybody!

If the groundhog acts like a mensch, that’s a good sign -- even it's on an entirely overcast day.

But recall the lines written by various poets paying tribute to this season and its promise of good things to come including one who got his senses mixed up.

Calimlin:

I want to hear the warm sun
And feel that robin singing
Watch the scent of the flowers
And smell the butterflies flying
It’s spring, it’s spring.

Shakespeare described spring as a joyous time “when shepherds pipe on oaten straws…and merry larks are ploughmen’s clocks… when turtles tread and rooks, and daws  and maidens bleach their summer smocks.”

Sidney Lanier: “Come out, thou little song of Spring…Float in the blue skies ravishing…”

Von Schiller: “Welcome, gentle Stripling
Nature’s darling thou! With thy basket full of blossoms...happy welcome now…”

Or, if you prefer Crosby and Sinatra and the songs of World War II vintage: “It’s spring again/And birds on the wing again/Start to sing again/the old melody/I love you/That’s the song of songs And it all belongs to you and me...”

So, buck up!  From the ice-glazed streets of Queens to the hills and rills of Riverdale, Spring is coming.

And soon we’ll hardly remember the ice and snowstorms, the chill Siberian winds that afflicted us in our grim winter. Spring springs eternal in the human heart.

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