In search of story

Writer in winter


If the fog comes on little cat feet, this snow is coming on a whirligig. I watch it from my kitchen window. Is the wind from the north, south, east or west? Yes. Some of the snow is falling up. The whole of it wants order.

This is not last week’s wall of white but rather gravity-resistant polkadots cavorting mid-air. I can see some clearly enough to imagine feathers; they are the ones that rock lazily back and forth on their vagrant way.

Some fall to rooftops, where they gather in the shingle edges and slowly build a giant grid, neatly right-angled. They gather also in my neighbor’s precise mowing lines, like so many tiny landing strips. In the street, the snow is fingerpaint to an Ansel Adams wind, swirling the white in curls and flourishes, not covering the blacktop but reveling in the contrasts.

A few days ago, the temperature hovered at 50. Robins! Phlox! How embarrassed they must be now: that was not the coming of spring; it was just cruel scam. The green of the emergent phlox was as welcome as the robin red in the bony crabapple tree, but neither belonged.

This is, as the song says, “the bleak mid-winter.” A world of buff and dun, huddled, withdrawn. I like it. It is still my preferred half of the year. Unenthusiastic about dark and cold, I nonetheless love the enforced quiet of this season, its inwardness, its pledge to sustain unseen life. Snow insulates, I am told, so growth can resume.

Gladly slowed, I hold tight to winter’s cloak and mitten-fumble for words.

like words. pushing up no matter the season

like feelings, pushing up no matter the season

4 thoughts on “Writer in winter

  1. I love the contrast between the plant tag and the actual plant in your photo. And your descriptions of the snow showers are poetry. Unfortunately, today’s round is not so gentle, but this too shall pass. I much prefer “buff” and “dunn,” what wonderful words.

    • Thank you — and thanks for reading! I hope you can see your good influence. Indeed, today’s round is some serious white stuff — and that wind is mean. Glad to be warming my hands over the keyboard.

  2. White fluff finger paint and mitten fumble. What terrific imagery you use! I could almost, almost come to agree to the superior inwardness of this season.

  3. “Almost, almost” — thanks for the chuckle. I do recall that you are a summer person.

    And thanks for the compliment. I really appreciate your taking the time to read my posts.

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