The “W” Word

The “W” Word

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It is time to “put the padlock on the gate” says the notice to members of South Pond, the timeless gathering place of summer.

This is crushing news to those of us who hold onto the sun until the ice freezes our fingers, and releases them, frost by frost, until we have lost our grip on summer, and even fall.

Today’s was a hard frost, but at least the sun is shining. Yesterday, when it was mostly grey, I saw my body flinging itself off a cliff over and over again. Luckily I was in my bed, under the covers, with a novel, ignoring the coming gloom of November.

In the evening, a friend invited us to gather around a fire in the woods behind her home. I didn’t want to. I didn’t want to do anything. But I did, and I was a better for it.

As the first star pieced the sky, I soaked up as much yellow and orange and red as I could from the flames inside her pit. This is our way of capturing the sun, I thought.  This is our way of making it ours, until it returns again to wake the world in tender greens.

Snow is the forecast this week. Snow.  There. I said it. The “S” word. (But I refuse to say the “W” word–no matter what the forecast.)

As a Vermonter of 18 years, I accept snow around Halloween, although I welcome a balmy night on which to Trick or Treat. Either is possible this time of year, as the Earth begins to rock us toward the “W” word– into that long, white slumber of deep.

Kelly Salasin, Marlboro, VT

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