I have friends back East in New York, Michigan, Chicago who have been relaying their experiences with the weather this winter. I see the snow drifts covering downtown streets and sidewalks. I can imagine standing before my friend’s picture window, layered with a gossamer of white and try to be thankful for the weather in the Pacific Northwest – mainly Skagit Valley where I live. The skies here are an endless gray, matching the pavement, matching the sidewalks. It is bleak and weary, this day after day of sameness, an eternal mixture of white and black. There is nothing mysteriously beautiful about the Gray Havens… I live there, I’m telling you.
We haven’t yet had the snowfall we require in the mountains, which means water rationing this summer. Climate change? Maybe. Certainly. The thing I know is we haven’t had a winter in my remembering that has approached 60 degrees F. We might have to mow our lawns before March 1st!
But all the same, we are blessed to be alive, blessed we have company, friends, and stories to occupy our winter-sick minds. Something about this weather reminds me of my dad, who is gone now, hopefully to a place not so gray and dreary…
Here’s something I’ve been working on… I hope you enjoy it!
He stops just short of the veil, as if he’s not sure whether or not he wills to be seen. And me, the one who thinks I get all metaphysical ins and outs of it all, wait. The problem with ghosts is they cannot dry your tears, cannot save your soul, cannot sit down for a drink. The problem with ghosts is they appear at their own timing, wanting nothing to do with schedules we toss forth, as if the physical can impose curfew upon wind and time.
But embrace me he did, wrap his arms around me, allowed my maladaptive heart to sink back into his care. Oh, how I miss his arms’ firm circle. If there were yet a thousand years together, it would not be enough. I need my father—we all need him. Some souls are just like that: Brave. Kind. Inspiring. He was all that and when we were together, we were the lucky ones.