Saturday, December 27, 2014

Footprints in the Snow

Snow-Artist Simon Beck, France

Fresh Christmas snow; I set out walking. The low sun angle strikes brilliant snow crystals into flashes of color, violet and red, bright blue and green, sparks of golden yellow. Fire from the cold.

After days of dismal cloud and single digit nights, snow fell, bleak of winter, and today cerulean blue, the mountain air dances with energy, with prana sparkles.

Just a little stillness; stop awhile and gawk... and the air is suddenly alive, and has been, but how often do we stop to notice?

People come to the mountains in part for the light and the radiant energy which cities occlude. One day we'll realize that our urban cell and microwave towers snuff out the life force of the land. And possibly the people!

I crunched along on my outdoorsy adventure, following the loping paw prints of a coyote.

They howl and yip in the night here. Saw deer and jack rabbit tracks. And finally, oh finally, no bear paws. Hibernation at last:

Also watched canine prints dancing around the linear plod of the owner. Dogs released from bad weather captivity run wild, nose in the snow like a plow. They lie on their backs and make snow angels and woof for doggie joy.

When I had the farm in the Blue Ridge Mts. where snow drifted deeply, my Norwegian elkhound hunted. Slimmer pickings in winter, but he'd lunge into drifts tracking tunnels invisible to sight.

The drift would swell, go walkabout and mound as his nose found the rodent trail.  Bursting out of the bank, a furry exultant primeval, he'd show me his catch, all but grinning.

I remember farm Christmases and the sound of children's laughter. 
In the long dark, wealth simplifies down to basics, warmth and a good woodpile, the honey scent of beeswax candles, heart-light of family and trustworthy friends, shared mugs of tea and bowls of hearty stew.

The wise among us, in all the world's sham and folly, still nurture life's simple joys.

A Happy New Year to us all, all over the world.

Stories read aloud,
My hearth to yours:


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