Winter: the Whale’s Belly

Our kitchen was forty-two degrees this morning. I leaned over the range and chipped a ridge in ice along the bottom of the window, and thought this is getting a little ridiculous. And I forgotten cream for the coffee. Often, in these morning – no Biblical scholar, not even a church-goer – I think of Jonah in the belly of his whale.

But then, home again from a basketball game, the wind blowing snow in our faces, my older daughter sang out, You can tell the light’s coming back! 

Indeed. Through translucent clouds, the day was yet bright, the moon a glowing gem tucked above the bare branches of maple trees. After a frozen day, the end was such a lovely place, with traces of snow falling, the white all around pure and white, and the light familiar and beckoning as that long-off spring.

...Winter is for women ----
The woman, still at her knitting,
At the cradle of Spanis walnut,
Her body a bulb in the cold and too dumb to think.

Will the hive survive, will the gladiolas
Succeed in banking their fires
To enter another year?
What will they taste of, the Christmas roses?
The bees are flying. They taste the spring.

– Sylvia Plath, "Wintering"


Photo by Molly S./North Bennington, Vermont

About Brett Ann Stanciu

A writer and sugarmaker, Brett Ann lives with her two daughters in stony soil Vermont. Her novel HIDDEN VIEW was published by Green Writers Press in the fall of 2015. Let my writing speak for itself.
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2 Responses to Winter: the Whale’s Belly

  1. Well I can’t top 42, but I can commiserate – we had 47 in our kitchen and bedroom. The moon was a pretty sight last night though and the sun is shining today!

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