Saturday, December 7, 2013

Senses Inventory: Snowy Frigid Day

Several inches of perfect white snow covering everything all over the farm.
Temperatures in single digits, plus a ferocious wind chill, all week long.
Less than three weeks till Christmas 
and my entire life in suspense, yet perfectly wonderful.
A Senses Inventory is called for.
So I walked out to the lower west pasture, 
past the llamas and to the edge of the pond 
and scribbled in purple ink with unfeeling fingers what I noticed.

See:  Gently sloping hills blanketed in thick, powdery snow. Glowing pale blue, it's so white. Snow criss-crossed with llama tracks. Llama tracks overlapping each other, dissecting the fields into beautiful, quilted hexagon patches. The quilted field merging visually into the quilted sky. Gray and blue, dark white clouds sewn together with irregular silver and gold rivulets of exposed sky. Prairie grasses, dry and golden blonde, standing tall above the snow, waving so gently you might not notice a deer creeping past. Pine Forest to the north, mammoth-tall and stoic, calm, frozen, peaceful. Size and strength masking a deep complexity, secrets beyond the obvious. The tree bark there is all onyx and glossy, flocked and frosted white in crowded little poofs, the sprawling branches piled up generously with this miraculous snow. Soaked. Steady. I glance around and see the llamas watching me, their always fuzzy snouts also flocked like they've been feasting on powdered sugar.

Hear:  Of course the snow mutes everything, hushes it, but it also amplifies small sounds. My moccasin boots crunch gently through the perfect drifts. A bird flies overhead and I can hear its wings flap. I hear the dry gliding sound of one gust of wind delivering snow across my path.

Smell:  Very little. Everything smells so... clean. Scraped clean to the bone. Purified. I can just barely smell pine perfume, and maybe one little trace of a neighbor's fireplace.

Touch:  Cold wind, biting, slicing, frigid. Jeans against my legs now as cold as marble. Tiny oval shaped hay seeds clinging to every side of my knit gloves. Hands beneath them, numb, feeling huge. So weird. My face is glowing with cold. This notebook flaps in the wind, spineless.

Taste:  Remnants of homemade fudge, sweet and rich, dark chocolate wonderfulness. Salty green olive juice still in my mouth, too. Luxurious snow-day food.

Think:  I keep thinking I see a wolf run across my peripheral. I have often seen coyotes here in broad daylight, but a wolf? Do we have those? Thinking about how people lived in this deep winter one hundred years ago. Thinking about the extremes that might drive a person to cannibalism. Wondering what I might cook for dinner. Probably not a person.

Feel:  Peaceful. Calm. Feeling very blessed and protected. Excited for Christmas, however different it is once again. Feeling less nostalgic than I usually do, much more in this beautiful moment. Feeling anxious to get back indoors and drink piping hot black tea and write in my gratitude journal.

Have you paused for an inventory of your senses lately?
I would be so happy to get a little glimpse of your world.
Please share a detail of what you sense around you.

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