Dark Night of Winter

I almost cried when I saw my front steps for the first time since January. I had forgotten what lay buried under all that snow. Things like grass and dirt and my drive to live.
It was such a long winter even for a New Englander which I am through and through. The winter was long and cold; dark and deep. The snow covered everything colorful, unique and worth getting up for in the morning. It erased distinctiveness and thrust it’s illusion of uniformity on our lives like the Nazi’s parachuting from the sky. But I loved it as it was falling. That snow lulled me into a trance, a sleep with its beautiful serenity, quiet and still it drew me in – it was almost sacred. Sacred like a knife used in ritualistic sacrifices. The white buried me alive, its purity drawing me in beneath a heavy blanket of conformity and I froze there willingly deceived by its wonder. I disappeared like one of the many flakes descending slowly before landing on a warm hand or a wet tongue or a heaping mound of ice crystals, either way I was gone – I ceased to exist all winter – I think.
Seeing those stairs I dared to hope again that I could find my smile, myself, my desire to belong in this world. Now almost all the snow is gone, melted into the water that will fill the leaves with their brilliant green and the tulips with their electric pink and the streams with their rapid flow. My heart is thawing too what will it become who will it fill and how will it grow? Creativity is returning, slowly being revealed like the soil but it’s always muddy in the beginning. I see now that color does still exist under winter, after 37 years you would think I would remember, but I am human and flawed and broken. The birds are singing. I can hear them now and all seems optimistic once again.
The seasons have become quite archetypical these days. I can’t help but see our souls merged with the changing weather patterns. I wonder if it’s supposed to be this way. Perhaps all this time we have had it wrong. It’s not life and then death, but a continuous cycle of death and then life, cold and then warm, barren followed by fertile, dark and then there was light. Like the seed that will very soon be bursting from its hidden soil bed, out of a hard coating where it was dead and lost and it will become something glorious. For months our yards and streets and homes and souls have been covered in a death like shroud a night that I have come to believe could not be penetrated or removed by anything except time and the Son. As it lays its light upon us life is revealed once again. That’s why I cried… for hope, hope that there is still life underneath it all and a set of stairs that lead home.

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