by Leta Herrington, LPC
612.332.7743 ext. 221
Benediction, by Kent Nerburn
The snow came last night. She left before the dawn, bestowing in her wake a benediction
upon the earth. Now, in the morning light, she greets us gently, a prayer
shawl donned upon the land.
Here and there a whirling gust, whipped up by the some angry and isolated wind,
rises tiny and intense like a petulant child trying to start a fight. But this is not
his day. The world is silent and at peace, and the tracks and markings we have
made upon the earth, the endless measurements and passages, are again forgiven.
I hold my breath. All is white and still. The pines stand in steepled reverence
against the sky. The elms reach out their fingers in naked supplication. And the
birch, kindred spirits to the winter earth, show off their white and graceful elegance
against the mantle of their sister snow. Far in the distance, the thin line of forest is a lacework
tracery, flashing diamonds of crystal light against the cold brilliance of the day...
...It makes the heart gentle, this snow, burying the sharp edges of life and cutting
us off from time. Our traces on the surface of the land are gone; our lives devoid of
history once more. All is singular; all is one. We are children at the dawn of time.
Begin again. Begin again. This snowfall says, begin again.
It is the purest absolution, and falls in vast forgiveness on us all.
Nerburn's poem perhaps offers a different way to think of snow falling
and entering a new year. With each fresh snow, a new beginning...