Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Victory is Mine

Every year when the skies grow dark and the air gets bitter cold, I wonder to myself if I can survive another winter. 

I sometimes think that the chill will saturate my bones like a malignancy- that the wind will bite at my face till I'm no longer human- 
and that the darkness will smother my heart till it can no longer feel joy.

I've always felt at odds with winter. 
As though it is an enemy- bound and determined to destroy me- to weaken me to the point of unconditional surrender. 
A brute and an evil that tests my fortitude and faith.

But I gaze out the window this morning and see the sun rising in a pool of lilacs and pinks-
its promise spreading across the hazy sky like a veil of mercy. And I smile- crack this membrane of winter 
and breathe in a hint of days to come.

 I pull open the blinds- wince at the sight of sharp, icy layers still floating on the pond- of snow heaped at the base of the pine trees- like a pile of white shirts that winter left behind.

But beyond, I see grass- brown and comatose, but tingling at its roots with new life. I see birds- soft and fat- bursting with the need to sing- to fill the trees with the music of spring- to fly through warm breezes and touch the blueness of the endless sky.

I imagine green spreading over the yard like emerald honey- like a gentle coat of flowers and clover. 
I close my eyes and feel the sun touching my face with an invisible hand and lifting me up from this winter bunker into the freshness of new days.

Soon daffodils will push their way out of frozen earth and stretch around the porch in tiny yellow dresses and the buds of trees will rip from their pods and dance with the honeysuckle.

Winter retreats. Spring grows stronger. 

I've survived.


Margaret Hall said...

Winter DOES do a 'number' on many of us...Winter seems to become stale, old, uninteresting, even though we reveled at the first few snowflakes...Also, we filled the kitchen with culinary scents of T'Giving and Christmas, sitting still in an over-stuffed chair admiring a tree dressed in tinsel..
Walking outdoors among the sogginess of the lawn, seeing the shivering limbs of the dogwood, hope brings scenes of soft tendrils of green, young and ready to burst our senses...
Love your posting on this gloomy Oregon morning, Rae..
Love, Margaret..

Joann Mannix said...

It gives me great comfort to know that the grayness of winter bears down hard on other people's souls, too. I may live in Florida, but we know gray and cold, too.

Today the sun is shining and with it, I feel promise.

Your posts are always a thing of beauty. this is no exception.

sisterlinda said...

Them thar sure is some prudy words! In other words (redneck and your sisters) "We survived the fricken winter and can't wait till spring"

We enjoyed those comfort foods, which packed on a few pounds, and we laugh that it is our winter layer and we will shed it in the Spring. We marveled at the beauty of the snow yet hated the cold temperature that it brought also.The ice made our world sparkle and shine but it also brought days of not being able to get out of the house.

Yes, we survived! Whoot-whoot!!

Beth Zimmerman said...

Amen! Winter tears at my spirits too but I couldn't have described it ... or the relief that comes with Spring ... anywhere near that well!

Jen Chandler said...


I stopped by for Nicole's blogfest and I'm glad I arrived early. This post is gorgeous!! Your imagry is breathtaking. "Emerald honey", "white shirts winter left behind".


Very nice to "meet" you :D


Tracy said...

Hi RAe,
So very nice to meet you...I stopped over from Nicole's Blogfest and loved what I read. I too am at odds with winter which is why I no longer live in Ohio! but now reside in NC where yes, we have winter but not for long! (at least let's hope not!)