Friday, January 03, 2020

Friday Ramble - First of the Year

The Winter Solstice came and went, and light is slowly returning to the world. Northern days are growing longer, but the effects of December's turning are felt in their own good time, and it will be a while before we sense real change.

January is a bitter month here, a time of snow and penetrating icy cold. It's tempting to remain indoors and just curl up by the fire with mugs of tea and books, but Beau and I need to be out in the woods now and again, however short our stay - the rambles nourish and sustain us, and we take them even on the coldest days in winter.  I carry a walking stick for treacherous areas on the trail, a camera of some sort, binoculars, a notebook and pen, a thermos of tea and Beau's biscuits.  There is seed for the birds, apples and cedar for the deer - we take along shears to cut that. It's a fair bit of weight to carry up into the woods, but we are used to doing it, and we don't think of the stuff we are carrying as a burden.

"Crunch, crunch, crunch" went our mukluks a few days ago as we made our way along the trail to the bird feeders.  It was surely our imagination this early in the year, but the snow seemed brighter than it was a few days ago. Sunlight sparked through the trees, and everything glittered. The light was sublime. We felt as if every jeweler's vault on the planet had been looted and the glittering contents spilled out at our feet.

There was flickering movement in woodland hollows, and shadows seemed to waver and flow like quicksilver as the wind moved through the trees. Shapes seemed less attenuated, deeper and more intense, more blue.  Here and there, a sprig of frozen green poked out of the snow, and the color was a hopeful thing, one that not even the biting north wind could carry away in its gelid paws.

Resolutions this year??? We are still reeling from Irv's death a few weeks ago, and we are trying to reimagine life without our soulmate, a painful, bewildering and heartsick undertaking. A friend (Waverly Fitzgerald) passed away on December 13, and another friend passed away a few days ago. We grieve for them too. My heart is not in making resolutions, and there won't be any resolutions scrawled on paper or etched in stone this time around, just the same old work in progress, breathing in and out, in and out. That will have to be enough.

In the words of Osaka Koryu, when we breathe in, we will breathe in the whole universe. When we breathe out, we will breathe out the whole universe. We will  go along together, paw in paw, and keep putting one foot in front of the other. As always on our walks, we will talk with the trees and look for the light.

2 comments:

Barbara R. said...

I do appreciate your Fri. rambles...and that you are sharing your step by step, breath by breath here. It helps me move forward in my very different life, but still with one foot in front of the other.

Tabor said...

So sorry for your grief and I hope you can bear the burden of losing so many good souls. Such a lovely area in which you live. I am hoping that also gives you inner peace and solace.