A landscape transformed

Another postcard from the land of grief 

This week it has been snowing in the land where I now live. Snow has a soothing effect on the landscape – like a cool cloth on a fevered brow. Sharp corners are rounded, bare trees are frosted, dropped litter and chewed up verges are hidden by a kind of physical amnesia. Every one of the millions of snowflakes is an emissary in this campaign of transformation.  As they fall, drift and settle – between them they contrive to hide what was seen.

New memories and experiences fall in similar fashion upon this landscape of grief. Each one is tiny, and incapable of making the slightest difference on its own. The corners are too sharp, the hollows too deep, the cracks too wide.  Between them, though – they begin to transform a landscape. Sometimes now it is possible to look over it and see a little beauty where before there were scars. Sometimes the sun creates more brightness than shadows across it.

Like the snow, though, the transformation can be temporary. Snow does not fill the pothole in the road or round the sharp corner of the roof – it only makes it look that way. With the melt the new becomes old again and the quest for transformation resumes. What I am finding, though, is that even a temporary transformation can be welcome. To see beauty instead of scars, or to see softness instead of hard edges is a sign of hope even when it is ephemeral. The land of grief, like any other land, has seasons…

Ginny teaching a lesson in how to gaze in wonder as the snow falls...

Ginny teaching a lesson in how to gaze in wonder as the snow falls…

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