Sunday, December 13, 2009


Much like the fox buried deep in his den or the robin tucked up in her twiggydown nest, I am exactly where I should be. Snuggled in feathers and linen and down, I feel the welcome weight of a furry white dog lying across my feet as I ebb and flow through the dawn. An icy wind blows through the windchimes, those cathedral bells of the morning that dangle throughout the thorny rosebush scrambling over my window. They are calling me to rise.
I burrow further down, in no hurry to partake of the coldest day yet this season. But eventually, reluctantly, I open one eye. Yes, it is just as I thought. The flamboyant Jack Frost has been at work through the night, I can see his artistic flourishes on the borders of my windowpanes. He will have painted the garden with silver, for his colour palette never alters. A nomadic soul, he travels the globe hand in hand with the cold, an itinerant painter of polar renown. The hoar frosts of Yorkshire, the frozen shoreline of St. Kilda, the rime rink lake in Maine - all bear his shivering signature.
He has found his way now to my very own garden and the sheen that emanates from his latest lifesize creation has changed the morning light that streams across my sleepy face. Sharp and insistent, it pierces the quiet room like a laser, with no intention whatsoever of allowing me to remain in my bed. It nudges, it taps, it calls to me of the tasks of this December day.... cake baking, present wrapping, cookie doughs and Christmas cards.
Ah, but is that not the goal of every great artist? Do they not wish for their work to inspire, to lift their audience out of themselves, to spur them on to greater things? And who am I to deny the artistry of Jack Frost.
I have seen his handiwork this morning.
So, I rise!

"Frost is the greatest artist of our clime - He paints in nature and describes in rime."
Thomas Hood