|by Charles Mariano|
I suppose, with the wind and rain outside, and more to come, we’ve cocooned with blankets, warm fires. I suppose, like the change of season, freezing cold, instead of sun, inward, instead of outward, the season of that endless war, killer hurricanes, loved ones lost, I’ll just turn the page, start over.
I’ve often wondered if I’m a winter writer, rather than summer. Throw on thick sweaters, coats, gloves and trek high up the mountain to my tower, to “bear” for winter. One small, frosty window to look out. “Countless tales,” I write in my journal shivering, “layers of rain, snow, and wind, to overcome.”
It is this imagination that binds. Pen in hand, fingers spread evenly on a keyboard. Wipe the frost, find the pulse. Tell them what ails, or inspires. Reveal the colors, be it agony, intense and miserably cold, or thoughts of romance, desires, engulfed or enflamed by simple candlelight. Set the temperature and tone, open the page, begin.
I suppose, from my mountain view, the lights below, mere weeks before Christmas, that I’ve got something significant to share. A vast landscape, glistening jewels of light, smoke billowing from thousands of chimneys. Don’t know, can’t tell yet. Maybe nothing.
I stroke my long beard, smoke my pipe, pull the flaps of my hat lower. We are, the words of every season, all of us, to our last breath, touching hearts and souls, scribbling blindly, breathlessly, designing, building, hunkering down.
But all is silent, save the wind, howling at my back.
Look, tell them of the pain of death, so recently endured, what my eyes have seen, tortured, beaten, abused. Tell them of flying high above the fray, a view so magnificent, it begs to say, to express, to share. Create an unforgettable character, that mighty hero of mind and heart that gives, saves, knows all. One who carries us to that tearful page of victory. Lie down here, another blanket to keep warm.
I suppose, there is no greatness, not now, perhaps later, but we trudge through, press on. Every day, every season, different.
High above the howling storm, frost on my beard, eyes searching wanefully to heartfelt losses, human touch. Seasons that follow, lead, churn deeply. Imagination does not go cold. Or does it? Here, take this pen, write it. Eyes, alive and moving beyond the snow, conjuring winters across the ridge, snowflakes dreamily to the page.
We’re not gone, only adjusting, acclimating, different sights and sounds, binding. Takes time to see, peel the layers, undress. There is nothing to say, not yet, the world at our feet.
“Countless tales,” I write, “layers of snow and wind, to overcome.”
©2006, Charles Mariano
Charles Mariano was born and raised in Merced, California. He lives in Sacramento, California, currently works in state government office and writes in the basement after hours.