Wintertime, but not winter blues
Funny, there is something in me that doesn’t want the winter to end despite yet another day of snow this mid-February day. Now dusk, it’s cozy here in our office with the lamps casting an amber hue, the space heater murmuring softly, Violet asleep and breathing deeply on the upholstered green chair beside me, Scott still working at his computer across the room. The brilliant red cardinal and his mate eat hungrily beneath the bird feeder, side by side, Scott said, because of the cold. In the adjoining kitchen homemade green pea soup bubbles on the stove.
I remember the first winter Scott and I spent together, the quiet dinners before the fireplace, the logs crackling and cheery, casting bright flickering shadows. Long conversations warmed the room. On one such evening, I recall reciting the wonderful Hal Borland poem “For Barbara” about the coming of springtime ( that my friend Margaret insisted that I memorize). “At turn of year when winter’s past…”
Back then I treasured every winter day (and I still do). I didn’t want it to end.
But here it is, four years later. In another month it should be spring, at least officially, if not climate-wise in our Northwest CT hill town. Our order of seeds and maybe the hydrangea and lilies from the Jung Company should have arrived from the Midwest. There is such a happy feeling when the old fashioned print catalog arrives in January. I imagine what it must have been like for the old timers, leafing through page by page, stopping after a bit “to save some and make it last.” Hope for spring and sun.
I enjoyed the catalog shopping over a period of weeks. The beautiful colorful photos on the over-sized pages were so inviting. I made my lists on my yellow pad, including my faithful favorites– giant zinnias and golden marigolds and multi-colored sunflowers. Practical vegetables– green bush beans and butternut squash– will hopefully bring big crops that can be frozen and saved for the next winter. We’re trying a new crop this year–potatoes–Yukon Gold and a red skinned variety. Scott will have to plow up new rows in our little meadow. I remember what fun it was to turn the earth and dig potatoes, so I’m hoping the children will think so too.
So despite the fact that I’m content with it being deep , dark February (It’s after six now.) the spring will bring new joys. Snow and icicles will have melted, nourishing the earth, casting off the rich, earthy smell I love. The lovely purple lilacs, my favorite flowers, will not be far behind. “At turn of year when winter’s past and spring’s at hand, I think at last I understand…”