Such deep hopefulness for what is to come in springtime, no?

My sweet dawg Anna left me this spring. My sweet Charley left me in the spring four years ago, and dear Freya not long afterwards.  Anna-ji is now resting peacefully on the beautiful property of beloved friends, Debra and Joy Roberts.  AND she is curled up at my feet at Atlanta Bread Company surfing the internet, grinning and tail thumping that as a spirit dawg, she can lounge in any restaurant she wants!

A while back, I posted “How many dogs?” about how I count my life in dogs – the value and the joy in my life.  And now I am dogless for the first time in 18 years.  Well, except for the spirit dog at my feet and four other spirit dogs in my heart. My heart, I realize, is full – with spirit dawgs, and I am so blessed by their presence, with or without their fur bodies.

I am at another point in my life that offers both danger and opportunity (see this wikipedia entry about the chinese character for “crisis” Spring is the time for moving forward, preparing for summer:  “In the depths of winter I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.” –  Albert Camus

This spring, despite the absence of Anna, I see the invincible summer on the horizon.  This past winter, Brian Lewis wrote the words “Warmth on the longest night” that for some reason reached  my very core.  Something about the juxtaposition of winter and warmth in the words of both Camus and Lewis… Despair and hope, perhaps? Though there is beauty in winter too.