the eternal snow-flower storm


Today it snowed flowers on me, and I remembered all the times it snowed snow on me when I was growing up in northern Ohio, where for seven months a year the sun would disappear behind a smear of gray as far as one could breathe, which was not very far.

When it snowed flowers on me today, I remembered driving down a dark road at night with my first healer partner, behind swishing wipers and sliding side to side on the road. We were not sure we’d even make it home that night, and we slipped along at 20kph waiting for the moment we’d slide into oblivion, would slide off the mountain and into a snowy grave.

I remembered the time we could not make it up the hill, and a car pulled up behind us, slowly inching its way forward until it tapped our bumper and pushed us where we needed to go: up – a long and curvacious up. We were poor then, “no food poor” as my friend used to describe it, and yet, I felt much richer than I do now, even richer than today when the flowers drifted from the trees on either side of the road and trickled over my helmet, down into my shirt pocket, over my shorts, onto my sandals, onto the floor board of my narrow scooter and the leaves of the tree I was carrying on it.

How beautiful it seemed, to be driving through a snow-flower storm, the wind rising off the coast, racing between the cliff faces, pushing flowers into me and birds swooping here and there, palms and bougainvillea, pink, yellow, white. Tree leaves sweeping over the street.

Before I laughed I cried, openly, inside my helmet, amazed and equally frightened by how far I have drifted over the earth, how so many years have passed, so many snow falls and rain storms, so many baked and heated sunny days, in so many places, and yet, everything and nothing has changed.

It is to be accepted that no matter where we go, we are always there to greet us, and as joyful an experience it may be to travel, to get away, to start anew, it’s always us there to greet us first, what we see, what we hear, what we make of our lives, snow-flower sun rises and wintery summer days.


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