I hold on to winter longer than anyone else I know. I love winter for what it is, for what it makes me feel, for what it turns me into — for how it forces family to huddle closer, and for how exquisitely alone I feel outside.
Winter is the season of absence.
Fresh snow provides a new record of nothing, a clean white canvas and a vacancy of presence. Winter is a fresh void, empty, with stirring winds drifting blank white powder across the earth.
Silent and suspended, life pauses under the ice. With the hibernation of trees and mountains, of mammals and bees, everything stalls for a while. Winter is a welcome respite from the dissonant crowds, from an aggressive and agitated world. It’s the absence of life.
On summer evenings, you can’t move without walking into something alive. Summer is the abundance of life, warming and swaying with the air itself. The living forest crawls. The trees sing. And the water . . . feeds it all.
But every living thing has a presence. Conscious or without a soul, with beating hearts or photosynthesis, living . . . carries a certain weight. It stacks. It builds. It grows and collects into hoards. Life takes up space. And that tenacious occupancy becomes a pressure of things. Existing. Everywhere.
Mercifully, the deep cold of winter offers an escape — an absence of life.
The empty sense of wintry solitude blankets you in a rush. You can’t stop it, and you wouldn’t want to.
Enjoy the day.
T R O U T B I T T E N