Our snow pack is rapidly melting away now, and I'm cool with that.
This winter has been completely, wonderfully enjoyable for me. My husband is quite pleased with the amount of snow and cold we received ... he had been a bit worried when real winter was late in arriving. Evidently last year was very sparse in the snow department, and snow is an ever important factor in the seasonal comings and goings that keep the locally grown agriculture in good form, that keep the swamps full of water and the river flowing at a vigorous and healthy level.
Last week one morning I looked outside and saw beautiful golden morning light on the still lush snow and realized I should bundle up, get outside and take some more photos while the snow was still pretty enough to capture.
I had noticed the day before some very interesting snow formations in our neighbor's ditch across the road. There was a snow drift there with folds of snow, layered on one another, dripping down in points. It was very interesting, and luckily the morning sun hit them just right for a great photo op. So there I went.
As I made my shots, I kept avoiding getting my own shadow caught in any of the shots.
But then a thought occurred to me, that the shadow actually looked rather interesting cast on the crest of the ditch. I turned the camera toward my shadow and as I snapped the first shot the words "evidence of me" came into my mind.
Evidence of me. It is an interesting concept that can take the mind in many different directions. Well, my mind anyway. (By the way, in the two photos of my shadow, notice the golden light reflected within the shadows of me and at the base of the long curving shadow on the snow bank? I absolutely love light, and reflected light within a shadow is a delicious piece of light to notice and take hold of.)
As I continued to shoot photos, the words kept coming out with each click of the shutter: evidence of me.
There was evidence of me, in the shadow shots. That was one thing.
All around me though, there was evidence of "me" ... I could feel the spirit of this winter whispering to me, "evidence of me." She was about to fade completely away and wanted to show me, before it was too late, her "evidence of me".
There was evidence also of life. Everywhere I went, looking down on the ground I could see animal foot prints of various sizes and character. They were out there looking for one another, or running from one another; looking for evidence of each other, leaving their own evidence behind.
Standing across from our river, there was still plenty of evidence of winter there ... a frozen, still-bodied river sleeping soundly beneath a thick blanket of snow, lit up gracefully with golden ribbons of morning light--a forewarning of the awakening that would soon be at hand.
Evidence of "me" -- the still frozen pieces of branch, twig, needles, cones of evergreen trapped ever so slightly by ice-frozen snow, on the brink of being set free by the sun and warming temperatures.
Snow sets stages, creates perfect lighting effects, isolates individual houses, trees, leaves, a river in a way that sets each thing apart in its own space and time and beckons to each of us to look at this thing of beauty. Look at it. It is evidence of life, of living, of grace and it is fleeting. Will we take the time to look, to appreciate these little works of momentary art, the evidence of which will be long gone and only remembered in our minds or perhaps by the chance photograph, painting, or description shared.
Within a few weeks the visual evidence of winter will be gone, but for those who know the truth of her influence, we will see her throughout the coming spring, summer, and fall when we enjoy the rush of river, the lush green foliage of spring and summer, the myriad flowers changing constantly by the side of the road and in fallow fields, the crisp crunchy goodness of apples when the fall comes again ... comes again on the eve of next year's winter.
I pledge to honor this particular winter above all others, because this was my first winter in my new home on a farm in western New York. Thank you dear sweet winter, for giving me such a bountiful welcome.
In other news ... I have nine yarns now, in a variety of colors, in the yarn shop at I Live on a Farm dot com. By the time I finished everything and had it all uploaded on Saturday night my eyes couldn't focus on anything for a while. They are still a bit worn out.
I enjoyed photographing the various yarns, and preparing the photos of swatches and so forth for the online shop. I tried to make the yarn look as yummy online as they are in person. They are all photographed on a pewter serving tray because they are as yummy as food. I wanted, if I could, to bring you as close to the experience of touching the yarn yourself as I could through my photography. Hopefully I have approached that to some degree.
Thanks for stopping by today, I always enjoy your company. My tea cup has run dry, so I will end off now and go down to brew a fresh cup o' something good and tasty.
[I hear a gaggle of Canadian geese flying overhead. Soon a large community will settle in out at our pond for a while. From what I hear they will be leaving evidence of an entirely different nature and I will have to tread more carefully when walking about in the yard.]
Meanwhile, you have a good day my friend.