The beauty (and the beasts) of spring

Published 10:00 pm Thursday, March 31, 2016

“…Or watch honey-bees busy around the hive of a summer forenoon,
Or animals feeding in the fields,
Or birds, or the wonderfulness of insects in the air,
Or the wonderfulness of the sundown, or of stars shining so quiet and bright,
Or the exquisite delicate thin curve of the new moon in spring;
These with the rest, one and all, are to me miracles,
The whole referring, yet each distinct and in its place.”

~ Walt Whitman, excerpt from “Miracles”

Welcome to April, dear readers! Spring has sprung early this year. White vistas of dogwoods are starting to bloom in lacey white drifts in lower elevations—seems like they’re a month early, but who’s complaining?

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On the other hand, I sure am complaining about mosquito larvae working on hatching out. My rain barrel had unwelcome swimmers wiggling around to get a jump on summer. Just as bad, on this morning’s foggy walk, a newly hatched tick hopped on poor River’s furry snout. The tick was quickly dispatched, which will teach him to terrorize an unsuspecting pooch. Those varmints are moving in and staying. This is no April Fool’s joke, either. I still haven’t figured out the purpose of fleas, ticks and other assorted pests including those three-ring circus politicians.

Saluda Welcome Table is every Tuesday. Dinner served from 5:30 -7 p.m. in the fellowship hall of Saluda United Methodist Church. All are welcome; donations accepted.

Saluda Community Land Trust (SCLT) benefits from your donations or time as a volunteer for their many community projects. Mark your calendar to bring the family for the annual meeting with speaker and naturalist Doug Elliot on April 13 at 6 p.m. at Saluda Center. The popular “Walks in the Woods” return in April on first and third Sundays. Contact SCLT at 828-749-1560 or visit

Donations to help support Saluda Historic Depot can be sent to P.O. Box 990, Saluda, NC 28773 or on the website. Saluda Train Tales are held on the third Friday each month April through October. Dean Campbell presents the next one on April 15 at 6:30 p.m. The Depot is open Thursday through Sunday noon – 4 p.m. thanks to a fine group of volunteers! On April 9 at 6:30 p.m. will be an opening in honor of beloved Saluda artist Bill Ryan, thanks to Jim Boyle who is lending Bill’s art for the exhibition.

Jerry’s Baddle Green River Race will be April 16.

In art news: I will have an opening reception for “Songs of the Earth” at Millard & Company/Tryon Depot, 22 Depot Street on April 8 from 5-7 p.m. All winter, I painted large canvases (which were made possible thanks to a N.C. Regional Artist project grant) and made spring bloom even when paint was freezing and I was too! I hope you’ll come by. The exhibit runs until May 16 and will be open regular business hours. Also, Saluda Historic Depot will present Saluda Art Legends – Past & Present for a May exhibit (reception May 7, 6:30) at Saluda Depot. The Saluda Arts Festival is May 21 so mark your calendars!

Happy April Birthday to: Martha Ashley, Melody Gibson, Dave Prudhomme, Kaye Vazquez, Cindy Keeter, Betty Anna Brown, Hope Pace, Diane Pace, Ruth Anderson, Greaton Sellers, Clay Arrington, Bonnie Bardos, Luther Connor, Gary Pace, Dee Owen, Doug Honeycutt, Niece Lundgren, Tommy Williamson and Rhonda Corley. Please add your birthday to the list!

Get well wishes go to Clara Smith Carter and Caroline Tindal.

Thank you dear readers, for reading this column. I love hearing from you! Whether you live here, or just wish you were here, the goal is to make you feel like you’re enjoying a front porch visit and small town life in a friendly little mountain town called Saluda. You can contact me at or 749-1153, visit for more writing and art, or find me on Facebook.