Friday, 18 January 2013
I read somewhere once that whatever season you're born into, that is the season you belong to all your life. It claims you, and you it; it settles in your bones - seasonal sediment. This is certainly true for me: I was born in a bitter February, and I am a child of Winter through and through.
It finally snowed last night, although - yet again! - barely anything remained this morning, just a thin layer of white, motheaten by sleet into a holey sort of lace. But when I left for the eight o’clock train, it was beginning to fall again, cautiously, delicately; by the time I reached work it was flying thick and fast, the ground crunching underfoot and the pines around the office shelved with it, so they looked like Christmas trees waiting for presents, white-ribboned, white-wrapped.
I don’t know what it is about snow. It isn’t the novelty of it, although perhaps that’s a very small part of why I love it so much. It’s the way it gentles everything. Gone, the gum-studded pavements; gone, the bleak bricks; gone, the usual boring views. Left in their place like a changeling: an expanse of white, glittering and clean, a casual sort of miracle, a holy sort of hush.
I love the way it creaks underfoot; I love the way that bootprints leave trackable paths, like the words on a page, or the clues on a treasure hunt: follow me, let me take you on a journey…
Snow is Narnia, and lanterns, and sleigh bells, snow is Christmas even in the Spring; snow is an icy fire in the cheeks and every finger throbbing with its own heartbeat.
It seems to have stopped now for the most part, although the forecasts are saying that more is on the way, and the sky is suitably wide and white, so I’m hopeful, I’m hopeful.
And let this be my moment of gratitude for today, also. The loveliness of snow. The poetry of nature.