Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Snow Thoughts

Today's photos are not of recent snowfall, unfortunately--these are photos I took in mid-December, on a day so startlingly clear that every picture I took was a keeper. We've not had such beautiful snow since and I am glad I was able to take these photos. Who knows when we'll have such a perfect day again?
Morning sun filters through icy trees to the driveway.

Snow has been blowing around here since Sunday. Nothing serious, not even a good covering on the ground; just enough to remind us that it is winter and snow may overtake our world at any time.

I keep hoping for a good snow day, the kind when the skies open up to dump soft grated ice in drifts on the ground, to hide the everyday and make the landscape an enchanted place of miniature mountains and valleys of sparkling whiteness. The forecast for tomorrow calls for "snow statewide." Does that mean little blowing bits, or a real good solid day of snow?

Icicles lace the edge of the roof of the cellar house.

I've been re-reading one of my favorite books of poetry, Winter Morning Walks by Ted Kooser. Written as 100 postcards to a friend as Kooser recovered from cancer, the poems speak of winter in simple language that surprises with its depth and description.
Like these lines from Five Below Zero:
You can imagine the face
of the cold, all wreathed in flying hair,
its long fingers spread, its thin blue lips
pressed into the indifferent ear
of the siding, whispering something
not one of us inside can hear.

Who can read that and not feel the chill fingers on their neck? Ted Kooser was our national Poet Laureate twice, and remains one of America's best poets, and my personal favorite. I find his writing easy to read and yet it lingers with me, recalling phrases and images for hours after I have put the book away.

(To see a video of Mr. Kooser speaking and reading his poetry, click here.)

The pond at the end of Joe's Run, covered with ice that froze so quickly it was clear.

Am I alone in my snow-lust? Are there others who long for a good solid covering of white?



Beautiful poetry. No, you are not alone in wishing for snow. I feel that need too, maybe for a different reason than just the beauty of it. I feel the need to be stranded at home. To be stopped and forced to narrow my path.

Granny Sue said...

Yes. That may be why I want it too. Snow changes the pace and the focus of our time.

Matthew Burns said...

I like the feeling of the calm before the storm. You know, those couple of hours when it is palpable in the air that a great storm is coming, everything is quiet, the animals are silent, the wind is non-existent. That is what I always look forward to when a snow storm rolls up. Here in Charleston, we don't get good snows, I don't think I've experienced a good snow here in the 2 1/2 years that we've lived here. I guess I'm going to have to go home on the mountain to experience this again.

I also like the fresh smell of the air immediately following a good heavy snow. The clean crisp feel of it is welcoming. Then after a few minutes, this too is gone. The snow too often simply becomes a slushy mess covered with the tracks of passersby as they go about their lives, oblivious to the gift that surrounds them.

Nice poem and pics.


Laura said...

We are wishing for snow. Our crops are in need of moisture and here in the Panhandle we are literally parched. Wildfire danger rises each day. Bring on the snow! (or rain)

Anonymous said...

Wish I could pack up some of our snow and send it your way. Seems like there was a fresh snowstorm every day for the last couple of weeks. 44" on the ground and winter has barely begun. Batsy

Granny Sue said...

We may get our wish for snow soon, if the weatherman is right. It's predicted for tonight and tomorrow. We'll see.

Matthew, we get more snow in Jackson County than Charleston, just enough north and out of the river valley to make the difference. Wich makes it hard to explain to work why I'll be late when the ground is clear in Chas and I'm telling them the roads are snow-covered.

Batsy, I hope your winter is not like last year. A person can get a little too much of a good thing!

Tiger Lady said...

Those are absolutely beautiful pictures. I'm not looking forward to snow just because I'm coming your way this weekend and I don't like driving in it.

Speaking of this weekend. I found a neat website on Apple Tree Wassailing. I posted a link in my last blogspot blog. I'm really excited.

Mary said...

I love the snow when I don't have to travel. This weekend will be Chicken Festival in Leavenworth, Kansas, so I hope it stays clear for a while. Your photos and the poem remind me of _Snowbound_ by John Greenleaf Whittier. I used to try to time it so that my Am. Lit. classes would read it on a day with snow or at least promise of snow. They seemed to get into it more and work to figure out the imagery.

Grand Life said...

Now I feel like an ingrate-- I just fled the snow for a month or two. I really love the snow but love being with my husband at the beach for awhile. I always enjoy your posts and look forward to visiting them.

bayouwoman said...

Living in the south, I've never learned to appreciate the snow, but it surely looks lovely. Can you remind me again what kind of "job" it is that you drive to? I read ti somewhere, and I know you travel to do story telling, but seems there is maybe a library job you do?

bayouwoman said...

Never mind---librarian! I found it!

Granny Sue said...

Yes but it's an odd librarian job--no books involved. Just buildings, vehicles, safety, ADA, security, etc. Not my choice, but it's what I'm doing.

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