Winter

Image: © Davy D Writer

“That’s what winter is: an exercise in remembering how to still yourself then how to come pliantly back to life again.”

Ali Smith

Winter is upon us in the UK, at least the meteorological version. Astronomical winter arrives on Wednesday, the 21st of December 2022. If you are an autumn lover there are still three weeks to embrace the season.

The word winter has remained unchanged in the English dictionary for a thousand years. It is derived from the Germanic word, wintruz, and the Indo – European root, wend or wed, (wet) which is why winter was often referred to as the wet season. In early medieval England, winter started on the 7th of November, and as we have just had the wettest November since records began, perhaps the old methods may have been a better way of determining the seasons.

Time For Slowing Down

It is that kind of mixed-up feeling that has followed me as I write this post. I read an excellent piece of writing on Instagram earlier this week, from @rosa.g.words. Rosa talked about how we may have lost contact with the changing of the seasons, ignoring the signs that different seasons bring. Winter is a time of slowing down, recharging batteries. Flora, fauna, and wildlife recognise these signs. Humans, we carry on at the same breakneck speed for 365 days of a year.

I’ve long felt that we were meant to hibernate, and winter is a continual push against nature’s circadian rhythms. Our ancestors appeared to have been better connected and slept more in the colder months. I did put something to sleep this week, the first draft of my novel. After two years I finally got it finished, all 117,000 words. My editor has suggested creating some distance so I can return to it with fresh eyes in the spring.

That will leave me with more time to write, sleep, and relax. What will you be doing this winter? As you ponder, here is one of my poems about winter, and a video to accompany it. Have a good weekend.   

Winter 

She dropped in last night, it had been a while.
I missed her at first, too busy slaying dragons
And saving the world. Her calling cards 
Of white blankets and grey sky fired the child in me.
Visions of snowball fights and snowmen drew me outside,
Her icy breath coating my throat and nostrils. 
In the surrounding silence she pulled me to the floor,
Arms and legs moving like Angels. We played for hours,
Sliding, cavorting, until her burning touch forced me away. 
As green pools appeared on her silken dress, she started
To withdraw. In a state of panic, I grabbed what remained.


18 thoughts on “Winter

  1. So much creativity here in one post! It served as my morning poem as my treat for wading through the news. I love the poem and could picture every word. What a pleasure to hear your smoothing voice recite it. Thank you, and have a cozy winter day. 🙂 Alicia

    1. Thank you so much for your lovely words and thoughts, Alicia. You have made my weekend. Glad I could offer some respite from the news. Have a good weekend.

  2. Winter hibernation? You don’t have to ask me twice. I’m in. Love the idea. It’s gotten colder here in the Northeast U.S. this week. It felt like it was going to snow a couple mornings this week. I was very much tempted to roll over and sleep for another two to three months. Lol. And congratulations on finishing your novel. Yes, stepping away for a bit is probably a good thing, but that’s a major accomplishment. The hard work is done! Congratulations.

    1. Thank you, Brian, that is most appreciated. I felt a bit lost for a few days because the temptation was just to get into the next draft. I’m glad it is not just me who wants to sleep until March. Have a good weekend and best of luck for your team tomorrow in the World Cup.

  3. Lovely poem, Davy. Brought back childhood memories of snowy days in the U.S. That’s the only time I can remember loving winter and its beauty. I can’t stand it now. Here in North India, it just gets foggy with icy winds and bitter cold. I long for summer and the heat. Hibernation is a good idea. Move over, bear, give me some space. 🙂

    1. I am glad the poem did that for you, Terveen. The temperatures have dropped here in the UK and a forecast of snow next week. There may be a rush to be with that bear. Have a good weekend.

  4. Great Post Davy. I think your editor has given you some good advice, to come back to your book with fresh eyes later. Congratulations on finishing your draft though. That must give you a sense of achievement.

    I agree it has been a wet (and mild) November up here too. But its turned colder now and I’ve had to look out gloves and scarfs. I heard we could have snow here in Glasgow by the end of the week coming.

    Hope you have a good winter and keep warm

    1. Thank you for kind words, Brenda, they are appreciated. I’ve just seen the weather forecast for next week and the temps are set to drop to freezing. You have a good winter too.

  5. Well done on completing that first draft of your novel, Davy. You do right by allowing it to hibernate until the spring. Fresh eyes on it in a fresh season will make all the difference.

    I loved the video and hearing your poem. As somebody with dyslexia, it made all the difference to me hearing you read the poem. I got so much more out of it that I did when reading it myself. So a big thank you for that.

    1. Thanks, Hugh, that is kind of you. I will be recording more of my poems and hope to post them on here. Have a good week and I appreciate your support.

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