open letter to winter

winter, winter, winter. hello.

I like you, I really do. But I don’t know if I love you yet. You cause me so much pain. Yes, yes, pain and love aren’t always mutually exclusive. If love and hate are two sides of the same coin, then pain and joy are the intertwined ridges on the rim. So it’s not always which side you land on, but also how you spin. But, winter, you also cause confusion. No, no, please don’t rationalize yourself to me. I’m not making a logical conclusion or a reason, I am expressing a feeling. And know this, that when you are not with me, I will miss you. I like you, I really do.

I carry no gloves, to liven that sense of touch. No toque, so that the snow nests in my hair, then turns to rain. But you take advantage of this. Fire warms and you cool, but you both burn. So much.

You shower us with your anger and your love. Sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference. The less fortunate freeze, but I suppose the summer with its heat waves is not much different.

You change things. You change so much. You’ve changed me. Your cover knows no bounds. You cover grass, bushes, trees, ponds, roofs, roads, sidewalks, driveways… and my car. You make things difficult, but I still hate it when people bitch about you. Don’t they know you’re coming? And you come every year, at the same time. Year after year, after year, and yet we still complain. As if you are a stranger, as if we don’t know you at all. That is not fair to you.

You alter the contours of my sidewalks. I have to re-learn familiar grounds. I feel your curves against the sole of my feet, and there is pain. But this is the pain that familiarizes me with you, how else will I learn to love you?

You confuse me. Winter, in you this year, I have slipped plenty, but fallen none. That, in more ways than one. So much confusion. This is part of why I will miss you, and this confuses me.

You surely leave your mark. As you mark the end of a past year and the start of a new one. You’ve marked an end of a past me, and the start of a new one.

I think I do love you. I don’t know what more to say, so I will listen. Tell me, how have you been?

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