Snow, Blessed Snow

It’s been a snowy winter so far in my area, central New Hampshire. The U.S. National Weather Service posted a map on its Facebook page (I can’t find it on its website) for snow totals for the Eastern U.S. through 22 February:

snow fall totals 2014-15 season for Eastern U.S. to 22 Feb(Thanks, Bill Garrity)

The city closest to my area is Concord NH, which had received more than 84 inches of snow as of 22 Feb, compared with an average snowfall to that date of 45 inches, or an 86% increase in snow from average.

*   *    *    *    *

I am loving it. In fact, it’s hard to imagine going back to only 45 inches of snow. It’s hard to imagine moving south to Georgia or South Carolina as we have been vaguely planning. Much as I love the low country, island life, shrimp & grits, marshes, tropical warmth, wide white beaches, and flat terrain, more and more this winter I am dreaming of living near the coast of Maine, because while the beach is necessary, I can’t give up its alter ego, snow.

blowing sand, Jekyll Island, GA, 26 Dec 2010
blowing sand, Jekyll Island, GA, 26 Dec 2010
beach with snow at Hampton Beach State Park, NH , 27 Nov 2014
beach with snow at Hampton Beach State Park, NH , 27 Nov 2014

*   *    *    *    *

The snow that’s fallen since December has been deep and powdery, perfect for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing;

hemlocks and snow, local trail, 17 Jan 2015
hemlocks and snow, local trail, 17 Jan 2015
trees and shelf fungus, local nature park, 25 Jan 2015
trees and shelf fungus, local nature park, 25 Jan 2015

MwithsnowshoesontrailLP17Jan2015

trail with evergreens in snow, local trail, 7 Feb 2015
trail with evergreens in snow, local trail, 7 Feb 2015
trees in deep snow and sunlight, The Fells, 22 Feb 2015
trees in deep snow and sunlight, The Fells, 22 Feb 2015
snowshoeing to island in Lake Sunapee, 22 Feb 2015
snowshoeing to island in Lake Sunapee, 22 Feb 2015
snow path through rhododendron, The Fells, 22 Feb 2015
snow path through rhododendron, The Fells, 22 Feb 2015

 

beautiful to look at, adorned with birds (click each for caption) …

… squirrels, playful dogs …

snowy grey squirrel, 19 Feb 2015
snowy grey squirrel, 19 Feb 2015
red squirrel in apple tree in snowstorm, 30 Jan 2015
red squirrel in apple tree in snowstorm, 30 Jan 2015
dogs playing in snow, 17 Feb 2015
dogs playing in snow, 17 Feb 2015

… plants …

row of cedars in snow, The Fells, 22 Feb 2015
row of cedars in snow, The Fells, 22 Feb 2015
dwarf 'River King' birch in snow, 3 Feb 2015
dwarf ‘River King’ birch in snow, 3 Feb 2015
plants in snow, local trail, 14 Feb 2015
plants in snow, local trail, 14 Feb 2015
hydrangea blooms and branches against snow, 22 Feb 2015
hydrangea blooms and branches against snow, 22 Feb 2015

… itself, mixed with sun, stark, shadow … ;

mid-winter backyard with mid-afternoon sun, 16 Feb 2015
mid-winter backyard with mid-afternoon sun, 16 Feb 2015
turkey tracks in snow, local nature park, 25 Jan 2015
turkey tracks in snow, local nature park, 25 Jan 2015
bridge with snow and sunlight, local trail, 10 Jan 2015
bridge with snow and sunlight, local trail, 10 Jan 2015
Norway maple, late afternoon sun, 10 Jan 2015
Norway maple, late afternoon sun, 10 Jan 2015
animal tracks, shadows, local nature park, 25 Jan 2015
animal tracks, shadows, local nature park, 25 Jan 2015
birch and building, 24 Jan 2015
birch and building, 24 Jan 2015

 

… and easy to walk through, even when it comes to my mid-thigh as I transverse the parts of the back yard where I haven’t shoveled a path (there are paths to the bird feeders but not to the birdbath or the motion camera).

path to one feeder, 22 Feb 2015
path to one feeder, 22 Feb 2015
path to another feeder, 22 Feb 2015
path to another feeder, 22 Feb 2015

 *    *    *    *    *

The sound when it falls,

that specific anticipatory silence,

is a tangible peace.

snowing, 30 Jan 2015

The fresh smell of it,

an airy icy messenger

from the cold wide sky,

intoxicates, invigorates, vitalizes.

winterskysnowtreesfeb2009

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *  

Snow

by Anne Sexton

 

Snow,

blessed snow,

comes out of the sky

like bleached flies.

The ground is no longer naked.

The ground has on its clothes.

The trees poke out of sheets

and each branch wears the sock of God.

*

There is hope.

There is hope everywhere.

I bite it.

Someone once said:

Don’t bite till you know

if it’s bread or stone.

What I bite is all bread,

rising, yeasty as a cloud.

*

There is hope.

There is hope everywhere.

Today God gives milk

and I have the pail.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: