Winter, How Do I Love Thee?

I love this short post by Dave Olsen, our friend out on the east end of Great Slave Lake.  You can read it here:  April 29th.

I admire this writing, concise and yet so aptly descriptive.  I love the aha moment of recognition of a shared experience or feeling, combined with  the admiration of seeing that experience described so perfectly.  Spare words in exactly the right places – that’s the feeling I get reading this, and often the feeling I get reading poetry.  And I am inspired by the sentiment, shared amongst many long time northerners.  Dave loves the long northern winter and tells us exactly why. I confess to being not quite there yet – I love PARTS of winter for sure, but I am most happy when its gone for a while, and we enjoy again the open water, the tirelessly long daylight, and the life that comes back to the land – especially the birds.  The great birds have been migrating past – we’ve seen swans, sandhill cranes and snow geese.  The other day I had a bike ride on the ice road with a pair of  eagles swooping around me.  Now the seagulls are everywhere – each small rock has a pair settling into nesting and raising young, and we have ducks swimming around our floating houseboat – all manner of ducks.  The Arctic terns are back too – they are a rather vicious bird if you get too close, and they have a rough cry, but they are beautiful and graceful, with their sleek black heads, and small white hurtling bodies.  I love that they fly all the way from the Antarctic every year – can you imagine what they must see?  The frogs in the marsh are singing with the joy of spring as well.  I’ve even seen a couple fish swimming in the open water along the shores. And the marsh last week was full of pussy willows, a giant fuzzy forest of them, each bush covered with little upright grey bulbs on every tip – like a surreal forest with lights.  This week they are gone as they begin to transform themselves into leaves.  It’s such an exciting time.  Goodbye winter.

About Tandi

I love my morning coffee, reading, the wilderness, paddling, poetry, my Spanish husband, and being a doctor. I also love writing my blog, and reading yours.
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One Response to Winter, How Do I Love Thee?

  1. shoreacres says:

    I had no idea the sandhills came that far north. I often see them here in the winter, especially if I get out and about, and farther south toward the coastal plain (and rice fields!)

    It won’t be long now — perhaps a month — and we’ll have swallow babies everywhere. They perch along the lifelines and dock lines of the boats, waiting for those tireless (exhausted?) parents to bring them lunch. It’s such fun. They can see or sense the arrival of food long before I see the parents, and my alert is the babies’ twittering. I know exactly what they’re saying: “Me first!”

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