DSCF0750On this day thirteen years ago, I wrote the following entry in my journal.

“I love the winter landscape when the eye of God seems to be everywhere, and snow is a white backdrop for the dark forms of trees.  I see things I never notice in the summer … fallen trees, leaning trees, trees growing up tall and straight. The tension in the patterns. When there is no snow, we see only gray on gray, brown on brown, black on black. The smallest details fade, melt into the background. Today would be a perfect day to go for a walk in the woods, to pay special attention to the visual structures the snow provides.”

DSC01859While I love bold colors and the warm seasons, when the garden is filled with flowers over a lengthy span of months, I also love the contrast of winter. It is when there is snow on the ground and the trees are bare, that I become aware of black, white, and the multitude of grays in between. I consider the composition of the landscape that I miss during the other seasons when it is hidden by foliage.

At no other time of year is the structure of the natural world so observable. Just a few days ago, when the sky was an ashen gray and rain splattered through the gutters along the roof’s edge, I examined the silhouette of a trees dark branches against the colorless sky. From my window, I marveled at the way the limbs spread out into empty space. I was reminded of blood vessels in the human body or the bronchioles within our lungs, that branch out from larger vessels, then taper off, narrowing into the smallest of twigs where buds burst forth as spring unfolds.

As I work on my memoir, I read through old journals … words that I wrote long ago, during other seasons of my life.  I am struck by the patterns and structure … the way my thoughts form on the page. Though time speeds by and I am miles from where I was thirteen years ago, the footprints and observations I chase after remain as they were and the mysteries I follow never end.

Do you keep a journal?  Do you go back and read them again, years later?  What do find that has changed?  What has stayed the same?

This entry was posted in Matters of the Spirit, Memoir, Quotes, The Garden, The Seasons, Time, wonderings, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Winter

  1. wpvintage says:

    I haven’t journaled in ages though life circumstances seem to thrust me in that direction now. The tightness I’ve felt surrounding it is being yanked looser.

  2. jzrart says:

    Susan, I know you’re going through lots of difficulty at the moment. For me, keeping a journal especially through times like that has always been very healing. It gives a voice to my anger, my sadness and guilt, when it’s hard for them to hear it. I’m sending peaceful thoughts and blessings your way.

  3. Becca says:

    I have kept journals off and on over the years, and had occasion to re-read some of them when I’ve been moving. The ones I happened to read were written when I was newly married, and I was laughing out loud at how young and stupid I was!

    • jzrart says:

      I have also found myself laughing as well. I’m finding the rereading is really interesting and even inspiring at times. I have found pieces of poems that I thought were horrific at the time and now think about pulling out and reworking.

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