Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Thaw

Hello My Dear,

The snow falls softly today and has settled much like a lacy shawl carelessly draped across an old woman's shoulders. Southern snow puts me in mind of long ago cotillions, of flowing white gowns on virginal young women and the white tie and tails of the young bucks who are anxious to change the physical status of said girls. When gazing at snow on pines, I think of stately grand dames sitting ramrod straight in their grey bombazine dresses, occasionally raising a speckled yet still graceful hand to discretely check their perfectly coiffed white hair. There's a certain music to the falling flakes; the constant crinkly sound of the snowflakes hitting a solid surface is occasionally punctuated by an obscenely loud crack of a broken branch...I must laugh as I'm reminded of the time poor Mr. McKeon was unable (unwilling, we always surmised) to contain a certain bodily function during mother's last Holiday Luncheon and the noise its natural release produced. The deafening silence after both the crack of the branch and Mr. McKeon's embarassing release hung on the frosty air for far too long.
Southern clean, so fresh, so shiny in its simplicity. Snow prettifies petty ugliness and lends a glossy glow to the mundane appearance of such things as run down porch gliders and those horrible rubbish containers that no one bothers to hide anymore. When it melts, all is washed clean and the water from the snow is absorbed into the ground, providing much needed water for growth in Spring.
So, to the point of my letter, my dear. It has come to my attention, via a vicious circuitous route commonly referred to as gossip, that there is, much to my chagrin, a parallel between the winter snow and the darkness within my soul. Being a person of common sense, I am not one to refuse an opportunity for improvement of self. I examined the weather of my soul and found the whisperings of the local gentry have some fair bit of merit.
Oh, it's so hard to admit to shortcomings! However, I agree that I have for some time now been in need of some snow in my soul. I'm ashamed, yet strangely relieved, to admit I've been harboring ill feelings, petty jealousies, and old slights for far too long. In this winter of my soul, I welcome the pure, cleansing effect of snow. So my gift to myself this Christmas season is the release of any lingering effects of our family quarrel. Determination of right or wrong no longer matters to me. The self-inflicted separation from all of you does, a great deal.
I hope you, too, can find it in your heart to let go of the hurts and angers we so callously inflicted upon each other on that long ago snowy day. I've missed you.

Until my next letter,

I remain,

Your Raleigh Writer

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