Winter bliss

To me, winter is stunningly beautiful.

Crystaline. Clear. Brought down to the bare bones. Fresh starts and traces of stories to be told.
Trees show their skeletons, stripped bare of the leaves that festoon them all summer long. Now, on a cold day, I can see the variety of shapes, the patterns of twigs, the golden ratio of trunk to branch. I can see all the hidden beauty that is overshadowed on those shady summer days.
Fresh snow wipes clean the surface of the ground, covering all and creating a fresh start. Stories get told in the paw prints left behind. Was this a fox? Or two? Was it trotting by when it heard the sound of a blind mole beneath the surface, when it circled back to pounce? Did a friend come to join in the feast? Or to gloat, “Hah! You missed another!” And did the snowboarder scare them off or slide through when the drama had long since passed.
These things leave me in awe and filled with Winter-Love!

Are your nose hairs freezing?

Now, I realize the irony of saying that from the warm, dry, safety of California. My nostalgia for all things snowy and icy may indeed be a romanticized version of the past. Have I forgotten the freezing of nose hairs? The scraping of windshields with a credit card? The disconcerting ways a car can pirouette when it finds itself on black ice?
But the truth is that every time I return to a winter climate I find myself relaxing in a way that a sunny beach never evokes.
The bundling of layers (long underwear, turtle neck, sweater, jacket, hat . . .) makes me feels like a warrior. The starkness of tree branches denuded of leaves, making their essential skeletal forms stand in stark relief, greet me like queer dance party of diversity (who knew there were so many different shapes, sizes, and branch configurations that could still describe “a tree”). Even the acoustics of sub-freezing temperatures brightens my ears, perking them to the crunch of frozen snow underfoot, the crack of ice stretching in it’s pond, the clear echo of chickadees flitting branch to branch. Winter is a synesthesist’s delight with sense stretched and altered and blended in surprising ways.
In winter’s barren landscape, I feel held and met.
Things are clean.
Which brings clarity . . . or atleast quiet . . . and hope to know what’s next.
How goes your wintertime? Anything crystalizing?
— Amy