Alas, that Spring should Vanish with the Rose

The title is from Fitgerald’s “The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam.”

Alas, that Spring should vanish with the Rose!
That Youth’s sweet-scented Manuscript should close!
The Nightingale that in the Branches sang,
Ah, whence, and whither flown again, who knows!

The end of spring comes just as roses bloom, alluding to the passing of youth and its blush, passing not into summer and it’s perfumed halcyon days but into the cold windswept downhill of the soul. The book has closed and the nightingale has flown.

Such is our topsy turvy weather, seeming to have no bearing on calendar or historical record.

Here it is, May 15, the spring planting date for where I reside in Zone 6–6b to be exact– the supposed “last frost” date for Allentown, Pennsylvania.  May 15 and the day sweeps in like March’s proverbial lion, blustering, threatening, cold and grey with a frost advisory for the wee hours. That means covering all the tender plants in plastic to protect them and to hopefully stem the stunting process.

Blizzard of 2016

Well, we had a pretty mild winter up until about a week ago. Then, I guess Mother Nature decided to make up for our lack of snow by dumping a whopping 31.9 inches in one weekend super storm. Saturday, January 23, 2016 became the Lehigh Valley’s “snowiest day ever” with 30 inches falling in 24 hours.

The photos below will give you an idea of the storm’s aftermath. Some were taken on Friday evening during a brief lull and the rest on Saturday afternoon as the neighborhood came together to dig ourselves out.

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