Archive for February 8th, 2010


The Sound of Snow

February 8, 2010

Whether or not you enjoyed the recent snowfall, El Niño is responsible.  El Niño is a quasi-periodic weather pattern in the Pacific Ocean, which occurs every few years, holding great influence over a large portion of the world.  Here in the LowCountry of South Carolina, it brings mostly rain when the event takes place in the winter months.  It would have been nice to have a bit of snow, just a bit.  When it’s measured in feet rather than inches, I simply don’t know what to do.

Still, I must admit I enjoy the snow, even large amounts, for a change of pace.  There is something magical about it.  I realize the adjective selection is somewhat different for the guy stuck outside in sub-zero temperatures, trying to shovel his car free.  Nonetheless, most people enjoy the anticipation of the year’s first snow as it seems to slow the world down a bit.

That’s the part I like best, the slow tempo of things with snowfall.  We rush around today and have little time to take in the world around us.  We live fast, hectic, and gritty lives in our modern society.  Snowfall reminds us we are part of something more – it connects us in a way.  It brings out the kid in all of us who wonders at the simple things in life.

I was in mountains of North Carolina one winter shortly after my father passed away.  It was not a particularly happy time and I was keeping to myself more than I normally do.  If you know me, you understand that is really saying something.  One morning, I woke up to the most magnificent view I have ever seen.  It was a seemingly endless carpet of snow that covered everything.  I had to be part of it.  Walking some distance, I could see nothing but white in every direction and the snow was falling even faster.  I stopped to enjoy the silence of the moment – silent but for the sound of snow.

The Sound of Snow

The sound of snow takes on many a form
molds itself to all and soon surrounds it
But when it floats and falls – leaves the swarm
’tis the soft “shhhhh…” the soul cannot forget

It calms as the sound slowly covers me
and makes me part of the world around
Still, the white veil does not change leaf or tree
but gently covers all and peace is found

A monochrome world that moment exists
for all I hear and see become as one
But if we’d keep it so, we’d be remiss
accepting the lie of such beauty spun

This sound of snow gives just a moment’s peace
but for that moment… pain and hatred cease

I think about that time often.  It has inspired many of my poems but none are more dear to me than this one.  I am a Southern boy who grew up on the coast.  Meaning, snow is not something I see regularly.  When I do, I have the privilege of its newness and take it in with awe.   It reminds me to live each moment for they are all precious. Each of us only has so many in life to enjoy.

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