|By the river, 2 weeks ago|
Between snow showers this morning the sky gleams blue, beaming with borrowed light. Then the grey cloud gathers like bunched silk, something languid, penitent almost, about this snow. It drifts in small grains, a barely revealed discovery of feeling, a timid emotion.
Silence, when I open the back door. No traffic sounds from the main road. Then one, just discernible, sounds like a plane. I can just see a lorry passing in the distance. Between snow showers I clear a path to the bird table put out piles of seed and fill the feeder. The birds are quiet this morning, dark specks pecking at the food.
A crow call. Each sound is magnified. What’s this one? It really is a plane this time. Or is it the wind in trees? A train? Are the trains running? No, it is the wind. I have a pile of logs stacked by the fire. It is very peaceful.
The windows look like Christmas card windows, a dusty gathering of snow in corners. They never look like that at Christmas. But they do today, the last day of February.
Later I go out in the blizzard. The worst part is getting round the side of the house in the deep snow.
Then down the hill where the snow comes up to the top of my boots. A tractor has recently gone along the back road and I walk in its tracks. The main road shows signs of some traffic having passed.
A few days ago I walked along the clifftops at Berwick so I could look at the sea. It looked like this, welcoming the spring, no thought of snow.