A rare surprise began when I slept. It rarely snows here in February, much less late February.
It is a place where snow rests in precarious positions. The rain comes swiftly, mixing with the snow itself to slush the road. A patch will remain here and there, sheltered by a wall, a tree, or the turn of the sun at this point, late in February.
“This snow” is the phrase I use to touch the snow with part of my mind. Another part, the part which sees something very similar to the illustration above, simply experiences that. But here, in words on this page or screen, I am attempting to touch the snow. Which is only metaphorical.
And also problematic once the weather begins to warm and the snow changes to rain which it almost invariably does here. Snow, like many of our ideas, is a conglomerate. “This snow” is nearby to me and “that snow” may have occurred last month or last year. We consider it in singular form because of its sensory natures although English does use snow in plural form from time to time, which is the key to the matter.
The snow is made of flakes, proverbial in their unique natures. The snow upon that branch is a picture in my mind. My mind blurs the flakes into a unity, a dream, a thing of beauty. But it is greater than the sum of its parts. This phrase becomes better with age and snow as is the recognition that I too may be snow.
I think of my lover's face in the pale light of the morning. Or is it the grayscapes of bluing shadow left in the pillow after he has risen? The snow has similar features, not only in the blank fabric of thought, but in the fact I find a certain timelessness in the pillow and the frozen water.
In the moment of first sight, a new world irrupts into my dream and I don't think of my lover returning or never returning. The ache of longing is not there. Not yet. So it is with the melting of the snow.
The difference in the ephemera we all are is duration which is naturally relative and impossible to define categorically. When you really stop and think about it.
Should I stop to think about it? Is the metaphor something else? As soon as it becomes these sounds in my head or these abstract symbols you are reading, the metaphor creates itself from the residua of the former world—the past, in other words.
In the warm sheets, or upon the cold branches I find that words are part of my world as well, and do nothing to diminish the beauty of the morning.