On the first snow

I’ve felt that feeling of glorious beginning only a few times in my life, but I can still remember the first moment for all of them.
It’s never a complete memory, just a glimpse, a snapshot.
You will never feel the way you do in that moment ever again. There will be highs, lows, the muddling about in between, but there is never anything so pure as the singular realization of possibility.

Today, I was too busy to write about how I feel about fall. About the way the light looks different now than it did a month ago, how the sun shines on crisp leaves. I wanted to show you the leaves blowing across the road, skipping along and settling. I wanted you to feel what I felt. Color set against the gray light. Beauty in the beginning of the end. (The beginning of anything is always the beginning of the end.)

It is one of those glimpses, a moment slipping away before the barren winter arrives.

Tonight is that feeling. Tonight is full of possibilities. Tonight, you don’t see it coming; you can’t; you’re too excited. It’ll stay like that forever.

The first snow is the best snow. It sneaks up on you when you least expect it and covers you before you have a chance to take it in. You sit by the window. You stare. You watch the flakes fall. You could watch for hours, you’re enamored. You want it to last forever – your childhood is calling. You see snowball fights and snow forts, your yellow kitchen table and mugs of hot chocolate.

You forget the frostbitten toes and pink cheeks. You forget the feeling of wet wool socks. Now, all you can see is the glittering, the snow falling through the eyes of the street lights. You forget that you’ve forgotten to pull you windshield wipers away from your car; that your winter jacket hasn’t been to the cleaners; that you’re going to be late for work.

The snow will turn black, eventually. It will melt away until the misshapen clumps become eyesores. You’ll ache for fresh flowers. You’ll hate how empty the trees are. Autumn fades before you know it, giving way to the endless winter. Just as you think you’re about to go mad with want of life, spring arrives to save you.

You feel the rush all over again. Love is the first day you run barefoot outside, only to realize the ground is still frozen underneath the spreading warmth.

Potential.

Either that, or six more weeks of winter.

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