the good north

It’s the last Saturday in March, and it’s late enough that it will be Sunday in 3 minutes. The bedroom’s window is open for fresh air, it’s above freezing and everything outdoors is dripping. The 2-3 ft of snow that was on top of the house has run off the eaves and continues, even without the sun, my whole environment is thawing. The window is open and this box I live in finally gets some fresh ventilation, ahhhh, it’s sweet to breathe in. Lots of air moving outside too, fast enough to make noise in the bare trees. Woodwinds? And the snow, it is still everywhere, still over a foot or two, but its condensing back to it’s liquid state, the crystals falling in on themselves, collapsing into water, water that runs off the roof, down the road and through wrinkles of mud, along the banked snow and the edge of the road running faster, taking over, as water is wont to do. The storm from last week that dumped 18 inches, (and over, up here), with drifts over 4ft around the back of this house, seems long gone, Spring is coming and will push it further back, for awhile.

I can understand why poor people would move to the South. the cost of heating and the toll of winter would be unaffordable if I made 20k less than I do now. Bought a good stove and stopped using gas for furnace and hot water floorboard radiators. Just the wood, and the time and work it takes to stack it and we stayed warm all winter, even through 30 below nights, long times below zero and windy, fucking windy and below zero, but we all stayed warm. Amazing. Put a wooden framed box on top of a basement, put a stove in the basement and put a chimney through the boxes roof, and you can dwell warmly and safely with 3 something feet of snow and 30 below zero night times. Amazing.

The Ice Queen, the North, she is good, she is good. She is sleep and she is beautiful, and nothing else makes you love the warmth of a yellow sun and the orange flames burning up your rock maple and yellow birch. There is seduction there in those cold and deeply snowed woods, in the biting whip of her skirts, in her coy retreats that return with all the passion of an avalanche. That dance, you and her, is coming to an end, she leaves with the diamonds you gave to her, of your energy, of your time and preparation, of the lost hens and the triple A calls, she is laden with those jewels you bought for her. She will go, and you will stay. And when she returns, she will take your breath away, again.

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