Why does it feel so twisted to take down the tree every year? I’m happy, yes, to make a little space. But I’m mostly concerned that I’ve got an empty space that I’ve got to heat somehow, that its too nordically sparse. that somehow a cold bear will find its way to hibernate in that corner, while snow falls on him.
and there will be a lone figure walking off into the shadows between the trees, and it will be me.
Today is bright and sunny though, and I’ve been looking at seed catalogues a lot, but it all feels fraudulent somehow. This tease on these cold days is just a delusion of mine own, that spring will ever arrive. my intellect knows that it does, that it gets colder first, and wet, and then life bursts forth. but my animal brain, the primitive goo riding side-saddle next to my internal glowing orb? that goo is convinced that a bear is coming.
The coffee is delicious and so strong my teeth get involved. So I’m sharing my writing group prompt here, and what I wrote, in ten minutes, because . because.
Tell me about a winter garden.
It feels like the months are unevenly split here, the winter lasts forever and not long enough and then summer rushes by. But i like the winter so much more and so the fall and the buildup to this cold and cozying time is all part and parcel of my favorite. The yard is left undone. I walk about and check on the places where things will grow again. Yesterday i found a cache of chicken eggs in amongst where the daisies grow. It will take a very careful collection, at this point. The shells are bleached white and are sharp against the frozen greens .
The ground is hard, what is noticed is shape and curve, a torment of the branch. Its beautiful, flat out. I wonder if i like this more than i like the chaos of the growth that happens, even though i do love that too. It starts slow but by the end of the season, this yard is completely beyond human interference, and while that is wild and beautiful, it is daunting, and there is no small part of me that feels i’ve failed somehow, in training, in dominating, in being the apex human.
The winter garden, the small strong things that have grown anyway, (how damn strong) that cover the raised bed in humps and bumps of green, despite the freeze. Its all cold, the bones ache, I leave the stalks and dry bits for the insects that hide in there, the winter homes of the bees.
There is no type A in me.
So what? Fear and acknowledgement of the chaos and the tumult to come, and its roots are stark and here, and making up the ground that is so hard. Its not a soft walk, right now, the ground as hard as asphalt, but not smooth, full of whatever makes the millions of pits and valleys. It does bring to mind poetry, it does. There is a great line that called cut corn stalks … sword hilts and it makes a battleground of my yard, those sword hilts all around. Although maybe more an art installation in my case. Laughing. There is so much in this.
The winter garden. What lies beneath… the flip side of the coin, the summer of growth and renewal and the winter of our discontent and burden. – oh my. Not burden but secrecy. Growth in secret.
THERE IS SO MUCH IN HERE THAT I AM ABSOLUTELY IN LOVE WITH. what strikes you, my pretties?
I’m from New England so I get to put on a boston accent whenever I want, okay?
I forget all the time how busy this month is. Honestly, why do i keep forgetting?
Last week there was a birthday. 13. This week there was a lovely snowday… (snowdays now are still ‘remote learning’ days) I called the boys out sick and i took the kids sledding. Went down the hill a few times and had fun and then hid in the car for the rest of the time. I’m not super good with bitter cold winds and things. One of the boys was wearing my snow pants so me and denim were facing the cold with a kid dressed head to toe in plastic protective gear. totally fair.
the hill is mis-named Potato Hill, which townies will tell you again and again. but we call it potato hill and its sticking and so be it. things change. and it is right, and good. fucking deal with it.
one kid went skiing on the same hill. freeforming down the hill. it was awesome to watch and to realize how big he is. sigh.
the point: because i was thrown off my schedule, i completely and utterly forgot I had class at night and missed it. complete and utter. in spinning and being spontaneous, the routine was thrashed and i missed it .
and things like this just keep happening. i’m rolling with it. until i don’t. or sometimes maybe i throw up all over the kitchen or need to take a second bath in a day. you feel me, right?
hopefully you are not throwing up all over the kitchen. fingers crossed.
i counted all the presents this weekend. they’ve all got equal numbers. this is a fucking miracle. really. i’m not sure if i can say that loudly enough.
EQUAL NUMBERS MEANS A BABY CAN BE BORN AND THE WORLD WILL KNOW PEACE.