Monday, March 9, 2020

March... the Time When Spring Tosses Winter to the Side of the Road

March is such a mysterious month. A month like none other really. It seems to change day to day... and if one is attuned... one will easily note that changes do occur hourly.

Looking into the ravine located just to the east of our building a new pink haze dominates the crowns of the trees. That haze is attributable to the newly opened buds... all within the same hours today.

Other new "happenings" coincide with these just mentioned. Every day this week, skeins of noisy, excited Canada geese... migrating to northern summer nesting grounds high overhead signal yet another annual change.

Noisy American robins dart here and there perhaps in search of food... but more likely are establishing territorial claims.

I could go on with observations that tell me... that spring is in the air. However, I have chosen to couple up my most recent painting completed this week with a poem entitled March... ironically written exactly eight years ago on Friday, March 9th, 2012.

Ironically???... I wonder!


Yester week's deep drifts of powder are all but vanished,
Bone-chilling cold... by a warmer sun has been banished.
White isles of snow in a tawny ocean of brown,
The air is perfumed pungently by the smell of bare ground.
Winter's ermine mantle has become rather ruddy,
Sullied by the rain and by thawing fields muddy.

High winds play tag through the now budding bough,
The quiet of winter replaced by new birdsong now.
Long quiet streams awaken from their sleep,
The dark rushing waters have a promise to keep.
Together... these harbingers trumpet the arrival of a king,
The coronation of Hope... and the arrival of Spring!

Here is the initial white chalk drawing on a 24 x 30 inch birch cradle board  panel, toned with black gesso. I find such mapping easy to interpret and easy to change randomly if necessary'

The painting process nearly always begins for me with a lay in of the lightest area... the sky. I work slowly through the middle ground... leaving the forground to be resolved last. Here, the greater amount of detail and exact colors are placed  to draw the viewer deep into the background.

Here I have "danced in" the snow patches and posts which create an interesting visual composition and pattern. All that remains to be done now... is "to push and pull" tonal values to balance and correct earlier interpretations. I also take time to add in what American Impressionist Master Emile Gruppe called... color surprises, This strategy encourages the brain of the viewer to search for these bits of eye candy.

Here is the final product... "March... a Time When Spring Sets Winter By the Side of the Road."

I hope that you can feel the joy that Spring delivers to my soul. Whether in verse ... or in paint the Natural World and its wonders continue to sustain me and to help me to continue to believe... the "Goodness exists. (Thank you to a fav Quebecois writer/novelist, Louise Penny for this wonderfully uplifting thought,)

Happy Spring Painting... to ALL!

Rich blessings of Joy and Good Health!


  1. Greetings Bruce, you have been busy! I can't believe four weeks have dashed by since I was last in blogging land! I love your paintings and the poem for March. Stay well and keep those beautiful paintings coming!

  2. Greetings back to you Lass! Yes... I try to remain busy and focused on my ideas and work.It helps to offset the doom and gloom presently round about me in the world. I have achieved with you at least, what I hoped to offer. That is the Joy and the spirit that only comes out of the true act of creation.

    Look forward to many more shavings between us Caroline.Stay happy... and well!

    Warmest regards... and blessings,