Still Winter in Connecticut

 

Still winter in Connecticut

There are tumbled rocks around this house with lichen curled about them and the snow which has appeared all winter still grasps their surface refusing to leave. I no longer like winter. It seems excessive to have to remind us we are fragile and that our hearts are easily frozen in time. The small dog prances over the crusty snow surface and stops, suddenly, feeling the bitterness of ice on feet, the rawness of winter here in Connecticut. All around us live others who stay in their houses all day lifting a corner of the curtains to observe life outside of them. If you watch carefully from your winter path you can feel a flutter of eyes on your shoulders from behind the bitter glass, like frozen vinegar or transparent whispers. When I come here I sleep in a room where another woman died and no matter what I do I can’t help her move on. She lies next to me in bed during the long, cold night wheezing into my dreams and whimpering for recognition. Her pain is not just the pain of illness but also, the unbearable pain of being ignored, becoming transparent, fading into the bed of death with no one there to keep pulling you back. She wants something from me but I can’t figure out what it is. Each night as I go to sleep I ask for my task from her:  my task to complete which will free her to move on. In death we are what we were in life but without any possibility of renewal, reward, refreshment or recognition.

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