Never mind the calendar and the
symmetry of its seasons. Never mind the divisions of its months or the
allocation of its days. It is winter that is by far the longest of its
seasons, and February by far the longest of its months. Winter is a
state of mind, a season of soul, a sleep of spirit. It is nature's
asystole, time's stasis, autumn's tomb, heavy, white, and icy as
silence. It is the night when earth rests and gathers up its cares.
But winter hides another side. If it is autumn's tomb, it is spring's
womb. If it is a forgetting, it is also a remembering. If it is the
night of the year, it is also the dawn of the year. If it is a sleep,
it is only a dreaming of new beginnings. If it is a silence, it is only
that lesser voices may be heard. Beneath the long whiteness, there are
stirrings and rustlings and sproutings. The long night is nearly over;
soon, rivers will flow, time will resume, nature will once more throb
with life. If February is the longest month of the soul, it is still
the one with the fewest days.
Southgate MT. Winter Landscape in Deer Grove. JAMA. 1999;281(6):491. doi:10.1001/jama.281.6.491
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