The Geometry of Winter
Winter is all about the angles.
On a practical level, it’s not about the rays, the radians, the degrees; it’s all about how much you can fit into them before it gets too dark, too cold, too both to bother anymore.
On this day, it’s about the angle of the Middle Eastern sands to the bottom spoke of a star in the sky; it’s about the conjunction of peasants and magi, saviors and kings.
It’s about the twelfth day of Christmas, and thank all that’s holy, the end of the song, and about getting ready to tear the tree down tomorrow and get down, finally, to the real business of winter.
It’s about rationalization and justification, about how much you can squeeze into the waking hours even when you get up well after the sun, and about how much you can let go until tomorrow when the dark unfurls like a blanket. It’s about how much guilt you feel for being behind on everything, and how you can work the angles to make it seem like you’ve done too much.
Winter is about the angle of the snow to the tops of your boots and the bottom of your coat, and the arc of your trajectory when your feet go flying on the ice. It’s the angle of gloves to ice scraper and windshield , of hat to hair and earmuffs to the wind.
Here, it’s about other angles, too, the ones so elemental no one notices.
It’s about the conjunction between earth and sky, the nexus of clouds and light. Winter is a spectral arc that rises and expands and connects until it almost births a sun dog, then contracts around the sun and leaves the wagging tails to future days. It’s storm and sun intersecting, locking themselves in a sinuous dance of the seven veils, each one shed at its own sensual angles until only the orb is left to shine open, naked, and bright.
Winter is long nights and deep sleeps and breathing slowed and steadied: like the conjunction of fading dark and light’s return, slow, deliberate, insistent on its own time and space and pace.
Winter is about the angle of rotation, of axis and orbit and earth revolving around the sun.
The geometry of winter at its best, though, is the one that bids me rest, to sit and drink my coffee and watch the slow dance of the long lowering slant of the light.
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