Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Chimes in the Night

Last night I experienced something that I never before had.  As I stepped out into the drive during the ice storm, I listened while icy, crackling music played in the trees above. The eeriness increased as the wind caused the music to circle the entire house while veiled in the darkness of night. It was beautiful. As I looked at the house, there was the only light; golden light streaming out through the windows. It was such an enjoyable few minutes. I attempt to write a prose about it here:

Chimes In the Night

A clattering in the giant maples and poplars overhead.
Ice falls from the blackness of sky this night.
As the winds begin in the south
Icy fingers touch each other, gently at first, creating chimes in the night.

I whirl, peering into black nothingness as
shiver of clacking branches circles to the east then north and west;
Chiming out their frozen, evening music.

Settled in the belly of a clearing of wood,
the tiny house stands, dwarfed by these towering musicians.
Like a large candled lantern, the light
tumbles from its portals;
creating a shining, golden carpet of welcome.

I stand for a time, listening to the icicles
forming and thickening on the twigs above me.
A rush of wind starts the symphony anew.

Frozen droplets rain down upon my head and face;
A shudder of chill runs through my core;

The streaming carpet welcomes me back
to the cozy lantern of what we call

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Freezing Rain

Thankfully the temps. were in the 20s this morning so perhaps we're through the worst of that cold snap. It's now raining on the Hill. I worked for a couple hours at a small office up the road and on my way home I noticed the rain was freezing onto the windshield immediately.

When I opened the door this afternoon Sturm went outside and "did his thing" without a leash for the first time (actually, second time, Syd has let him out once on his own). Ruger took the reins and proceeded to "roll" Sturm a few times. They play very hard. It appears that Ruger's jaw is unhinged in this picture, and look at the whites of his EYES! How funny.

After we came in they wouldn't leave me alone and I finally opened the door again for them to go out. This time though it was REALLY raining and I wasn't standing out there in it, so we're in.

It's time to get some supper ready. Last night I made beef stew and raisin bran muffins, which we love. Both are such warming, comfort foods. I look forward to Syd being home and the darkness closing in around the house. Praise the Lord for a warm home and a loving husband. I praise Him that Mom and other family are safe in their homes, and so nearby. We have so much to be thankful for!

If you come up tonight, mind the snowy road. I came up in 2 wheel drive though, so you should have no trouble. Thanks for visiting. Next time I'll try not to be so busy and we can chat longer.

Monday, January 16, 2012

At the Edge of the Forest

Purple shadows swirl, as if folded into a topping of mounded cream. Tree stalks, some standing straight, others leaning, appear as frosted cinnamon sticks proceeding from a mug of winter cheer.  

Here is where the forest begins. 

A simple cabin welcomes hikers as they step beneath the portal of the wood's ceiling. Evergreens, heavily laden with crusted snow, have eased our otherwise cumbersome way. Here we can walk freely, stepping over the occasional branch blown down by a stiff north wind.  The way winds down and down,  toward the east side of the hill. Where the sugarbush begins our steps become more deliberate and laborious. The sun has founds its way between the branches, warming the snow-face in daytime and freezing it to a smooth icing at night. This afternoon proves frigid and we step up onto the crust, testing its strength. For a time it holds us fast but intermittently a weak spot is discovered and the labor begins anew. How the trees have grown since coming here as a child. The forest has spread and widened, overtaking what was once open grassland. In younger days I would hike through these woods, making my way to the top of Darling Hill from my grandfather's house, below the Titus field.

These narrow roads; muddy in Spring, solid in Summer; fragrant in Autumn and challenging in Winter; they've carried many a traveler over the years, leading them from one end of this stretch of forest to the other. A trail crosses here. It leads from the village to Flagpole Hill. Always, this parcel has been open for those who wish to tramp through. We stop at the place where my brother's former cabin stood. Old boards and remains lay beneath the mounded snow. Several a weary and lonesome traveler spent their nights here. My brother attested to this as he would enter the cabin, already inhabited by a stranger. Other times a note would be left; scratched on a piece of scrap paper or birch bark, "thanks for the warm place to sleep" or "I was here - to escape the rainy night." These are the things I remember as I stand amongst the snowy trees.
The Bible says that all things "wax old". Buildings decay and crumble. People age and eventually pass into eternity.  Memories wax old also. I hold so many memories of this place, as does my mother before me. Hiking through these trails bring the thoughts to life again. Here is where I found my first morel mushroom. We gathered water at this spring which my brother dug in the earth and lined with rocks. My friends who would vist, marveled at snowshoeing "so far from any houses". It was all "home" to me and these woods were a safe place to be. 

Life is full of changes. The only thing that stays the same is God and the Word of God. I have had the priviledge of "coming home again", but it is a different  place than it used to be. I'm thankful for this walk through the forest, to hear the laughter and voices in my memory of those happy, bygone days.

As a christian, I now know that this world is not my home. I have an eternal home waiting for me in heaven. There we will leave behind the dirt and dust of these earthly paths and walk on streets of pure gold. We will not eat of Darling Hill's duchess apples, though delicious, but will eat of the tree that bears twelve manner of fruit. As pleasant as this earth is, my natural mind just can't fathom the beauty that awaits me in my heavenly home! 

I leave the forest now, with a new spring in my step, refreshed by both old and new thoughts. The delicate snowflakes are falling and resting on my lashes. Here is the "new" cabin; I have reached the edge of the forest and step out from under the woods' canopy into the light and it remins me of  a verse in Proverbs 4:18, "But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day."