Thursday, January 6, 2011


It is winter.  Last week, at the end of the holiday season, it snowed.  It was a large storm and all was immobilized in New York. There was so much silence.  The streets and lawns and waters were covered with snow and ice.  The mayor of New York vanished and the streets of the city were filled and filled with angelic whiteness.  Winter swallowed up human activity.  In the suburbs, we peered out from our windows at the angry storm.  The wind raged. As the wind slowed on the second day, snow covered everything—a mountainous heavy covering.  Slowly, we (suburbanites) emerged from our warm shelters and began shoveling.  It took hours.  The snow was deep and wet and thick.  Our backs ached when we had done with clearing our driveways and porches and stairs.  We returned to our warm shelters and lit fires and read books and thought about how winter changes everything.  In winter, we become internal creatures.  We return to the selves we were before the warm summer—dark and pensive and inward.   How wonderful it is to have seasons.  How simple and bland must it be to live in a place of single or only mildly different seasons. For those of us who go from a hot green summer to dark cold winter again and again, we experience death and rebirth in profound ways.  We get to be different people living in vastly different worlds—in summer, we are outgoing and free, corporeal and lush and sensual; in winter—our bodies quiet and our minds become ethereal and wordy things.   

Summer now seems like a dream.