Tuesday, 21 December 2010

The Eve of the Winter Solstice

Standing beneath a clear blue night sky I gazed upon the landscape before me. The night carried with it the sharpest frost I had seen in many years, the trees and plants wore a heavy white coat and stood still in the windless air. The full moon threw its light over and through the few clouds in the sky as they seemed to hang motionless.

The scene stood in silence, as the existence of people lay in only the past. The fences and labours of the farm workers from years gone by stood as tribute to their presence, but tonight the landscape belonged to the raw elemental cold against nature. Closing my eyes for a moment I could feel the night air claiming claiming the warmth of my body as if needing payment for the solitude and wonders before me. After a while I returned to the hovel to take a few hours rest before waking to watch the rising sun on the winter solstice.

The increasing glow of the sun pushed through low mists and clouds, gently at first as if giving the eyes chance to adjust from the night but it was soon in its full glory. The light rushed across the frosted landscape giving the trees a radiant and spectacular glow. Flutterings of wings reached my ears as the birds made their way to find food and show their survival of a brutally cold night. The walk towards spring has begun and I hope the nights will be a little warmer and kinder as we travel, but I have no doubts that there will be sights of wonder to inspire, let us hope they are appreciated and learned from. With luck more people will take the time to observe.

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