First Snow

I step outside, looking for signs of the impending storm.  The sky is heavy, laden with snow that has yet to fall. It is dawn and yet so dark and gray that it is more like dusk .  There is an air of expectation, a holding of breath.  The chickadees, normally so vocal during the morning hours, are quiet and only one brave titmouse loiters by the feeder.
I wait for it, the snow that has been promised us for days on end, trumpeted by forecasters who love a good storm.
I wait for it, snow shovel tucked inside the front door, boots, mittens and hat at the ready.  The wind has picked up, sharp and bitter.  A few rogue flurries hit my cheek, a hint of what's to come.

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If it does ever come.  I wonder what the sky is waiting for because clearly it is pregnant with snow, much the same way that I am filled with anticipation.  For now, the world outside our window is bleak, muted; muddy brown, soft gray, olive green.   The house will be lit from within today as the sun is obscured by the blanket of clouds.

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Blanket.  Warmth.  Pause.  Rest.  These are the words that remind me of winter, winter words that nudge us and tell us that it is time to reflect and take stock.  I long for the snow to come, to wrap us in white, to settle a mantle of holy hush upon the earth.
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I love the snow, how it sweeps away the bareness of winter, dressing the trees by draping a soft stole over their bare limbs.  I love how it shimmers like glitter when struck by the sun, blindingly white.  The crunch of snow underfoot,  the muffling of sound.  The world is a gentler place after a snow fall.
Soon it will arrive and I am willing to wait for it.

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