Scavengers have been out in the night again. They leave only an outline of themselves -- a colander, a curtain. Look closely and you can see where they trod, to what lengths they sought sustenance in this cold.
To say my interior winter is cold is to say a lion is fierce. How do we measure our interior seasons? Not with blunt tools that call cold cold. Face-numbing, organ-gripping howl, ice so thick it's no longer clear. Most of us survive winter by waiting her out, knowing that spring will come.
The last time I experienced winter -- and by "experienced" I mean I did not just travel through it by going from A to B as quickly as I could -- I woke to the splendor of each morning, blinded by Our Grand Dame's making. I don't know who "our" is when I'm talking about Our Grand Dame, only that she is not my interior winter alone, no matter how personal winter can feel. I lived that winter in a barn on the edge of the earth. Each morning I had to shield my eyes. Spring was not a hoped-for, foregone conclusion; the word "loam" was nowhere in my vocabulary. It was only Our Grand Dame and me, her sun and her moon casting oblong shadows on snow. She held me in the cup of her knotted hand, talking of tasks and barriers. She was trying to tell me that to live fully is to forgive our scavengers their nature.