I abhor the winter when it’s coming, begging every leaf of autumn to break its promise to God and remain on the tree forever.
But then the snows blanket my mountain town in newness, grace and quiet beauty, and I remember the true gifts that winter brings.
Once we realize the reality of that which we fear, we often find it not quite so frightful after all. Winter comes, and though I resist with every bone in my body, it settles gentle in my soul and lovingly urges me to look within and seek the acceptance of whatever is in the moment.
So I wonder, as I gaze out upon fields of virgin snow, how might I come to love the winters of my heart just as I so readily accept the winters of my land.
How might I come to understand and appreciate the cold and distance which invariably creep into my relationships? When my lover pulls away to tend to her own, or when a friend takes his leave, how might I settle my restless summer’s heart and lay peacefully in the warmth of my solitude?
When winter comes, I know summer will return, and nature handles her affairs with infinite grace. So much cannot be said for my relationships, or at least I don’t believe so. We are human, after all, and prone to bumbling. But nonetheless, the sun will rise anew in the sky each morning, whether icy or warm, and the day will begin without my saying so.
So tonight I send this prayer to the river in hopes of learning something of the heart.
May I learn to trust the love I’ve known as thoroughly as I trust the seasons. May I surrender into stillness when it arises, whether blown in on a winter’s gale or whispered from the lips of my beloved. May my heart rest quietly in the knowing that spring always follows winter, and that love always follows solitude.
May I come to love the winters of my heart just as I love the winters of my lands.