The day broke strong and bright signaling the beginning of the weekend. Warm humidity of melting snow permeated the air, and stirrings within me suggested strongly the possibility of the maple trees awakening, sap running. Gathering my brace, hammer, and a few taps in my vest pocket, I stepped out into the melting snow, feeling the crystalline crunch beneath the leather on my feet–sugar snow. My pulse quickens my steps, as though I can feel the stirring within, rising up from beneath, a rousing in the roots that have lay quietly sleeping.
It is not a long walk on the path of the sugar trail to the first maple. I can feel the certainty of unseen movement beneath the earth, under layers, beneath bark and skin, as I move along, curiosity stirring in my bones. I whisper a prayer, blessing, an offering of gratitude on my breath as my feet step deeply through soft, grainy layers of retreating snow. Approaching slowly, reverently, bowing from within before the regal tree, honoring the sacred connection between creation and me. Gently my hands caress, bringing skin to bark, asking silently where it is that she is willing to give from, where it is I may receive.
I close my eyes, breathe deeply her essence, lean in, and feel to where she guides. Her wisdom is deep, I trust her knowing more than my own. I see with eyes, as well as heart, the space that she provides to nurture, share her lifeblood, her sap. I feel her readiness to open, to receive, to offer and give freely, all that she has to share, her longing invitation to nurture deep those who are waiting.
It is with whispers of prayers from softly parted lips, deep gratitude, and genuine love, that I place the first tap. I open her slowly with gentle hands and notice the wetness, the dampness that signals all that she offers. With heightening energy and emotion, she brings forth from within, her gifts. The sap runs freely, wildly, gently, pulsing life echoing the pulse under my skin.
The awakening has begun.