A few days ago ground was showing through in the sunny places, and even though the rain washed five thousand bucks of gravel off the road (the road uses gravel like a trashy blonde girlfriend uses cocaine) it was possible to believe we would have a multicolored world again. Now, the world is only white.
White is the color of stuck vehicles, lost chains, busted equipment; white is the color of cold slush up to where your crack becomes your back. It is the color of groaning roofs, missing livestock, vanishing firewood; it is the shimmering luminescent color of sleepless nights.
My neighbor is old school; snow doesn’t bother her. Her advice: suck it up. She smiled into my ice covered beard and said, “it’s spring. Just be patient.” For years she cleared her dirt road with a walk behind snow blower. Hours before daylight she’d be shaving the snow from the road, making several passes, coming in just in time to shower and make it to work. “We used snowshoes,” she said, nodding to my snowmobile, a practical machine but not designed to surf fresh powder. Snowshoes? A lump of fat would break loose and block my heart.
Every morning I look out at the snow to see how deep on the dog it is. This morning it was deep enough the dog wouldn’t come. But, my canny neighbor is right, it is spring. The snow is deep, but it’s already melting. The days are getting longer, the geese are looking to lay; during the break in the weather there was a patch of meadow exposed and the tiny grass shoots were already straining for the sun. The earth is muffled under the snow, but not sleeping. A little sunlight, a little rain, and the world will be a green so brilliant it will hurt your eyes to look on the meadow in the sun.
It’s spring, just be patient.