Sunday, February 6, 2011

A winter moment I experienced years ago

We just keep getting more and more and more and more snow here. Yesterday I was supposed to take Princess to a baby shower for a friend of hers in the next town over. I got stuck in the driveway. I finally tunneled out of that and slid down the hill to town. As I was getting fuel in the car I watched cars sliding down the major highway road as they attempted to go up a hill. Finally a policeman showed up and prevented traffic from going in that direction. A guy at the service station who came from there said they were stopping traffic until a plow and salt/ sand truck could get there.

Since I had some time on my hands and I didn't want to do anything productive like clean or laundry, I was looking at some old- by old I mean 4 or 5 years ago old- blog material and I found the following. I wrote this about a winter moment I had when I lived in the the Wild West. I thought it was at least apropos for the season, if nothing else.

The arctic-like wind blows across the plains, sweeping the snow into swirls like sheets dancing on a clothes line. The barren land is white as far as the eye can see in the twilight. The peaks of the gumbo hills are covered in white fluff, standing proud and tall in the distance. But the hills cannot break the impressive line of whiteness that stretches for endless miles. It's the sort of day where dawn breaks but the haze in the sky hangs low and the clouds cannot be discerned from the contrasting sky; there is not a difference between in the heavens and the earth. We are stuck in a world of white and it seems as if the sky and land know no ending nor beginning.

The snow covers the world and cocoons it from any other colors. It seems as if heaven has collapsed into the Earth. There are not trees in this field nor in the distance. Just earth, covered in the cold blanket called winter. The plains slope and gently roll, but the whiteness is overwhelming and dominates the world. The fence line is hidden under the winter sheets, as are the scrub bushes and sage brush.

The only signs of life in this apocalyptic setting are two fold: the footprints of a deer, one single set of tracks, that almost daintily dot the lonely landscape leaving a trail which suddenly ends in a small dip in the distance. The other is the wind. The silent blowing has a noise, even as it sweeps across the desolateness. Though there are no trees to whistle through, there is a steady humming in the gale forces that add to the sheer aloneness of this winter land, that is wondrous in a sad way.

As I slowly turn away, my breath in a cloudy fog around my head, I gasp mouthfuls of the freezing cold air, tasting the frozen harsh earth, enraptured by what is winter.


1 comment:

Curley said...

WOW! That is beautifully written. As I was reading this, husband looks outside and says "it's starting to snow again". That ended the beautiful pictures in my head. Reality is not as nice as fantasy.