Snow

As I write this it is snowing, the circle of the sun clearly visible behind a thin layer of cloud. Despite falling for hours, the snow hasn’t laid; gazing out from the warmth of my room, it could just as easily be the seed fluff of willow or poplar carried by spring breezes. It’s a joyful thing to watch how receptive it is to the tiniest shifts in the currents of air, one moment suspended, the next plummeting in chaotic spirals, only to vanish into the ground like ghosts through walls.

 

Snow clouds seem brighter, lighter, not like the brooding greys of rain. Gravity does not weigh so heavily on their contents; even in raging blizzard the spaces between appear more tangible. Watching the weightlessness of snow falling, I feel insubstantial, as if I too could be lifted, carried, perfectly choreographed by the movement of invisible forces.

 

I open my window; our neighbour’s cat on the high fence, white flakes adorning his beautiful, fiery coat; the sun breaking through briefly, a pale, white haemorrhage of light. There is a peculiar silence that comes with snow, as if time too were suspended. I hold out my hand and watch the flakes dissolve within a second of contact, and I marvel at how such a beautiful thing cannot be grasped or kept. It is not the sadness of transience that snow invokes; there is something more enduring in its fragility. Perhaps it is the relative rarity of the event that intensifies the memory of it, each subsequent encounter building upon the original magic. Its impact is never lost; snow makes children of us all.

 

 

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