The Kitten Paws of Spring

There’s a solitary little willow standing beside the road on my way home, worn and battered by the merciless snow plows of winter, yet resilient and stubborn as if it knew of nothing else. And it has grown increasingly furry of late.

As far as I know (and please correct me if I’m wrong), in English these cute little downy things are called pussy willows. In Norwegian they’re kitten paws (puselabber) or goose chicks (gåsunger), depending where you grew up, or are growing up, or, if you’re anything like me, have sworn never to grow up. The biggest of these furballs are just about the size of the tip of my little finger.

This was yesterday, March 31st, just before dusk with the sun hiding behind a nearby hill. They’ve officially announced the arrival of spring.

Clicking the pictures will open bigger versions on

Photos are copyright © Bjørnar Andre Haveland


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