But I Have It


51540122_10157396442668352_632964388566859776_oI have this little

But I have it

The polar vortex has passed

And the aching, sore earth is sighing and misting

My boot finds every kind of frozen

Ice, slush, snow, hard snow, light snow


51059162_10157396442963352_8314855530262691840_o51064526_10157396443113352_7210241253705777152_o51068864_10157396443403352_4129828157110878208_oIt doesn’t escape notice

The way the green plants dance in the stream

The way of the red branches among the dry grass

Silent sentinels of vibrant color.

I have this little

But I have it

51593466_10157396443693352_2698223013693751296_o51387579_10157396443243352_4749509088004538368_oThe way of water in winter scenes

Obsidian moving, gleaming, slicing through the white

Expired plants extend their dried up hands

And offer their seeds to the wind

Live again

When snow has been drunk back into the earth

I have this little

But I have it.



Winter’s Deep

_MG_4751 _MG_4753 _MG_4756It can be taken as a bother.  Pinching, wincing, painful faces we pull as we slip and shuffle over slick sidewalks to our cars.  There is a face as well for scraping frost off the windows, especially if some of it ends up on that vulnerable gap between glove and sleeve.  There’s the way the seats inside creak with stiffness and we get tangled in a battle between our scarves and our seat belts and how the heater never catches up until we’ve arrived at our destinations, and there’s the fact that the children will always ask that you turn up the heat, and you’ll bristle because you’ve explained how heaters in cars need time to warm up a million times plus twenty.

Winter, after the twinkly brightness and joy of Christmas have passed, can seem like a gray that pains, a long stretch of ache, and mothers can start climbing the walls.

Here we haven’t had much snow yet, but 27 days without sunshine seemed significant.  There was precipitation and cold but not concurrently, so we had a lot of rain and mud and children who weren’t spending enough of their exuberant energy out of doors.  That’s crazy-making, for all of us._MG_5246 _MG_5247

From last year, when the snow wore the children out on a regular basis.

Now, this year baby Tobias came and it feels like I carry Summer’s warmth, and Spring’s flowers, and Fall’s bright leaves all in my heart at once.  The winter hems us in, tucks us into our house where the tall old windows let the light pool out onto the dark yard.  It lays sleep on the roses and the grapes and, praise God above, the weeds, and my to-do lists are all house-bound.

IMG_2039It’s enough to know that the seasons will keep rolling around again, isn’t it?  When my children are driving me batty with their big bodies crashing through the house in a game of tag and their noise is prodigious, it’s enough.

Because in winter’s deep there’s a baby tucked into my arms, soft little fuzzy newborn head below my chin, and the winter hems us in, and the windows spill light into the dark.