May 17, 1852

in Thoreau’s Journal:

Do I smell the young birch leaves at a distance? Most trees are beautiful when leafing out but especially the birch. After a storm at this season the sun comes out & lights up the tender expanding leaves & all Nature is full of light & fragrance—& the birds sing without ceasing—and the earth is a fairy-land.

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The birch leaves are so small that you see the landscape through the tree—& they are like silvery & green spangles in the sun fluttering about the tree.