Like most residents of the Mid Atlantic region I woke to a world covered in ice. There was a good 1/4″ of the stuff on the trees… the cars… the streets.
This is Winter’s job… to make us feel cold, yes, but brittle too. Winter puts us in our place and lets us know that we are one good wind away from breaking, snapping clean, and being brought down to the ground.
Winter bleaches the color out of the landscape and blows at us until us until we can only see in the simplest, meanest terms of black and white.
Winter throws everything it has at us and dares us to be optimistic enough to think that anything will change. “LIFE IS HARD!” It laughs in its cold, harsh, bellowing voice. And it defies us to find anything beautiful or hopeful in the long cold day.
But it has forgotten that we can see beauty in all things… all we have to do is slow down and look. We know, despite what a cute little ground hog may or may not have said a few days ago in Pennsylvania that Spring and Easter are on the way…
And damn if we aren’t resilient enough to hold on for a few more snow storms.
Hope you’ll have a safe, uneventful drive home (where ever home is).
Here’s a Robert Frost poem to celebrate the crack of branches and common things.
An Old Man’s Winter Night
All out of doors looked darkly in at him
Through the thin frost, almost in separate stars,
That gathers on the pane in empty rooms.
What kept his eyes from giving back the gaze
Was the lamp tilted near them in his hand.
What kept him from remembering what it was
That brought him to that creaking room was age.
He stood with barrels round him — at a loss.
And having scared the cellar under him
In clomping there, he scared it once again
In clomping off; — and scared the outer night,
Which has its sounds, familiar, like the roar
Of trees and crack of branches, common things,
But nothing so like beating on a box.
A light he was to no one but himself
Where now he sat, concerned with he knew what,
A quiet light, and then not even that.
He consigned to the moon, such as she was,
So late-arising, to the broken moon
As better than the sun in any case
For such a charge, his snow upon the roof,
His icicles along the wall to keep;
And slept. The log that shifted with a jolt
Once in the stove, disturbed him and he shifted,
And eased his heavy breathing, but still slept.
One aged man — one man — can’t keep a house,
A farm, a countryside, or if he can,
It’s thus he does it of a winter night.