Sugar. Salt. Stars.

The air has turned this morning when I step outside in the dark with my bucket of hot stove ashes. Even without my coat, I’m not immediately shivering, and the cold doesn’t come at me with daggers on my face.

Beneath the starry sky, I gazed up at Ursa Major, a single gauzy cloud suspended overhead, as if in water. I’m reminded of frog’s eggs, those cushiony pillows I sought with my daughters when they were little. Every spring, we found clusters in ponds and in the ditches along our dirt road. We’d visit these clusters every day on our wanders. Sometimes the eggs hatched. Sometimes the clustered disappeared.

On this early February morning, beneath the stars, I stood for a few more quiet moments, thinking about stars and frogs’ eggs. Snow’s expected to move in soon, too.

As water given sugar sweetens, given salt grows salty, 

we become our choices.

~ Jane Hirshfield

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