Skunk Cabbage (Getting out of the House with a Toddler: Zega Lockatong Preserve, Delaware Township)

Used to be that only skunk cabbage would bloom in March, then there's these 70 plus degree days in mid-March. Today at Zega Lockatong bloodroot, spicebush, and spring beauty were in bloom. Lesser celandine was, too. Single blooms on one plant each of toothwort and violet. Virginia waterleaf foliage was up. 

Except for some steep spots, a great place to walk with a child. Little runs to shuffle through, a deep creek to skip shale stones across. Greasy grass stems to pick, spring beauty to smell. Patches of hemlock to offer shade from hot sun. 

The Dirty Three have a song called "Everything's F*cked." For those who don't know Dirty Three's music you may be surprised to learn there is no angry vocalist, but a violinist, drummer and guitarist who play beautiful, intriguing music. I sometimes feel that everything's f*cked.

Like when I receive an email that emerald ash borer is just across the Delaware River in Bucks County. I think about that email as I sit with good company, eating the meal they have prepared for us, beneath the deepening blue sky of evening, next to the old farm house, listening to peepers, as we next to a stately, old ash tree. Driving through the Midwest two summers ago, I was saddened to see ash trees, saplings even, all dry skeletons.

And there's Thursday's predicted high of 76. It's hard not to think that well, everything's f*cked. I usually say that I wouldn't have had a child if I honestly believed the world would end or that I felt as though life was not essentially and purely a good thing.

There are choices and mistakes. Hardships and losses. Funerals and junk mail. Taxes and edits.

There is my son's jubilant face when I return from work and the time he clapped when his father returned from work. Ice cream and Anarchy in the UK. Eastern phoebes and a perfect photograph.

Still, it's ok when everything's f*cked because not everything is.