Wishing away winter
Christmas may be a pagan mismash but at least it sprinkles a little stardust on the dark days of winter.
But while the holidays can revive December, there's no equivalent to January which always feels like the longest and dirtiest month of the year.
In these dog days of January we toil under leaden skies with little sign of respite. Snow has already lost its novelty factor and the cold seems to have been seeping into our bones for ever.
And, I'm not sure if it's just my imagination, but my bosses seem less tolerant than usual. We endure long hours of techiness under artificial lights and we disappear within ourselves. The beach is a distant memory. The swallows flew long ago.
One day I will visit the southern hempisphere where the seasons are turned upside down. But for now, I endure and think of other times, the past and the future - anything but here.
And the people for whom all hope has gone who are waiting to die.
But when the sun comes out on crisp mornings January can be pretty in an austere, blue kind of way.
I have a new route to work and recently I pulled off the road to check out a nature trail. I'd driven past this place on many occasions but never stopped. But this morning I walked through the quiet of the marshes with the towers of the city, distant oblongs smudged out across the river.
There was a copse of high trees and peaceful white lines in the sky. There were pleasing boardwalks across the freezing waters that the sun cast symmetrical shadows on. So I took pictures and for once realized I was no longer wishing away winter.
For a collection of winter poems see my poetry blog Rhyme and Reason.