January 22, 2007

War of the Weather

As published online by
Donna Dawson
Author of Redeemed and The Adam & Eve Project

A war has been waged between snow and rain in our little world. Neither has won and both have settled for a compromise. As I trudge to the barn, my feet crunch over a carpet of ice, crushing the layers with my weight into shards of rotted vegetation and firm fluid. The Manitoba maple, its massive crown sheathed in a glittering coat, bows only slightly as though this is a covering of little significance. The row of cedars that run along the southern fenceline droop and sag, green bows decorated as though adorned with jewels of great value. They look sad in spite of the splendor and I can't help but feel their effort to remain erect.

It is as though I have stepped through the wardrobe into that barren and bitter world of Narnia and I shiver against the sterile beauty. My wire fences have a scalloped appearance as they swing from one ice-glazed post to the next. Silence reigns supreme, interrupted only by an occasional tinkling as droplets of ice break free from their coniferous perches to skitter across the unending skating rinks. The apple tree sends skeletal arms outward, not quite able to reach heavenward because of its shining fetters.

I enter the barn and instantly leave the ostentatious sameness of the outdoors for the variety of sounds and smells and colours. Bubba greets me with his eager yowl and embraces my leg with the shrug of a furry side. The horses grumble their hunger and watch me as I load up the sled with the muted green hay. And then I step back into the fairy land of still giants and ice statues and I deposit my cargo in the center of the paddock. It looks out of place, the only speck of colour in this whole landscape.

The horses smell the crisp, moist air and shuffle in their haste to be out in the open. I throw wide the stall doors and allow them their freedom, watching them in return as they gingerly follow my footsteps to their meal. One last pat for Bubba and I close up the barn and head back across this foreign world to the warmth and safety of my house.


  1. Donna, your descriptions put me there. Oh sure, we have snow in suburbia, but I grew up on a farm with horses and dogs and ice-glazed fence posts, and this piece makes me miss it intensely! Well done!!


  2. Rich and vivid. Nice writing!


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