ATIS, author, Book, books, cold, Dean K Miller, dreams, echoes, free, friends, fun, Ghost Guide, Hot Chocolate Press, Iclcles, journey, life, love, morning, mountains, NCW, Oceans, Peace, poetry, river, Smile, smiles, Winter's, words
The Winter’s Cold
A long cold day moves into evening. Stepping into Safeway for refuge, I ponder my choices. With twenty minutes to my choosing I am seeking warmth. After purchasing a cup of hot Pacific Chowder (it’s always back to the ocean) I slide into a chair by the window. Apparently I still need some connection to the weather outside. Surprisingly, there is little distraction as I browse the pages of a book while enjoying the hot chowder. The minutes slide by easily and the words on the pages melt into my being. The time to leave has arrived, and stepping outside, the air is filled with small snowflakes. It is the second snow of the season, though this one appears to have the desire to stay around longer. The wind dances the flakes around trees and windows, extending each one’s life a bit longer. Soon the melting will slow and a frosting of white will cover the land. Like long lost friends, each flake meets with those clustered on the ground, mingling an hour or two, maybe longer, before melting back to their roots, flowing down stream and ultimately reaching the sea, where life was born before, where we will all return, always knowing and hopefully without fear.
“That looks cold”, was all I said as we drove by the lake. Yesterday’s snow blankets the ground; the lake is choppy and grey, though not necessarily angry. The atmosphere in the car is as oppressive as the weather outside.
“Yeah” came the singular reply, another clear reflection of the mood. Driving on in silence, the evening’s light fades behind the heavy gray skies, which seem to lack the energy to release more snow.
Returning home alone in the car, I pass by the same lake. The radio stations are determined not to please me, as most of the day has done as well. So I choose the CD player to see what it offers. Cued up is a song titled “Covered in Rain”. At least something “gets it.” I continue homeward, letting the music share the mood, both inside and out. The neighborhood cars display low hanging icicles – dirty and brown, hiding their crystalline beauty inside. I see the same in my now departed passenger, and wonder when her inner light will shine.
Much like the feeling after the first snowfall, that summer will never return, I find myself wondering the same. And like the weather, I cannot control the actions or motivations of those who surround me. And so I wait for the setting sun of summer and the return of the soul whose journey has moved beyond. I pray it finds a new dawn and returns home, enveloping us with the golden hues and beauty, that only love creates.
A new morning, not quite as grey, and hope appears upon the horizon. I have saddled on the stationary bike and open a my book. Turning to where I stopped reading, the chapter is simply titled “Warmth”. It is exactly what I need and I allow it to take me where I need to go. Upon completion of my workout, as I close the book, a wayward bookmark falls from the back pages. It is a beach sunset scene, a silhouette of two men fishing off the rocks. As always, the journey has returned to the ocean, and the journey has returned a smile.