Tuesday, January 30, 2018
It’s a snowy day, and a school-is-cancelled snow day. After an indoor morning of prayer, writing, and cleaning, I am happy to see that the winds and driving snow have given way to a light breeze and an occasional snowflake. I put on my winter clothes and walk into nature’s crystal white. My street has been plowed, but no one is outside. It’s just me until I turn onto High street. A mother and daughter are shoveling their driveway a few houses down, and the two little girls who live in the big white house are making angels while their mother and uncle look on. Once every minute or so, a car or truck passes. In between, there’s only the scrape of shovels and the crunch of boots to break the peaceful quiet of this place.
No one’s walked on the sidewalks in the past few hours, and only a couple of homeowners have cleared the sections in front of their houses. I think I see the faint print of a boot every so often – someone who walked early in the morning, perhaps. Just like Peter in Keats’ The Snowy Day, I make different patterns in the snow by pointing my feet in or out, or by dragging them to make two long lines. It’s one of my favorite children’s books, one I loved as a young child and I loved as the mother of young children. As I make my marks in the snow, I wonder how many other people have done the same because of Keats’ words and pictures – millions, I’d guess.
The wind has made snowdrifts across parts of the sidewalk and swept other parts almost clean. Mother nature seems happy to give my feet a varied path and my eyes a feast of snowy geometry and graceful evergreen. I’m so glad I came outside. I wouldn’t have missed the sharp fresh air, the joy of this walk, or the beauty of my blanketed neighborhood for anything.