Wednesday, February 22, 2012

A Letter to Old Man Winter - Time of Vicissitude - W4W


This winter has been a time of ups and downs and flip-flops--a time of fluctuation.




One day we have 60 degree (F) weather, and the next we have an ice storm--a time of unpredictability.


For a few days, my garden seems dormant and at rest, and then it seems as if it is preparing for an early spring--a time of constant change. I am joining Donna at Garden Walk Garden Talk for Word 4 Wednesday, Time.


I have found myself disappointed at times that this winter has not been a winter of shivering weather and snow-covered landscapes. And so, I thought I would send a letter to The One.


A letter to Old Man Winter--

Dear Mr. Winter,


Oh Illustrious One who paints a palette of white and gray and delights many with rest and repose, I write you a letter to make a humble request.


Before I make my request, I would like to ask, Your Silver Majesty, if you are doing well? Have you partaken of enough sustenance and pause to be your robust and charismatic self? We all know you as an old and wise seer of all things seasonally cold and frosty. Are you well, Oh Alabaster Prophet? I only ask out of concern for your well-being.


I ask about your health, Oh Pearly Sage, because it seems as if your energies have been focused on only a few areas this winter instead of the entire northern hemisphere. We often look forward to your visits, gracing us with sparkly reflections of snow and frigid days that bring us closer to the fireplace. Your presence captivates us with enchanted forests, offers a haven with small makeshift igloos for garden plants, and provides us all, garden and gardener, with a much needed respite. Are you strong enough to come for a visit? Or was it that you were merely awaiting an invitation?


Oh Fair and Frosty King of the Crystal Palace, I hereby formally request the honor of your presence to our Winter Ball. All the preparations have been made as we have been patiently waiting for your appearance. Please come and bring your alchemistic wand to layer us with a cloak of delicate snowflakes that shimmers like nacre and captivates us with scenes of otherworldly beauty. We welcome you with open arms and anticipate your arrival.


Your humble servant,


The Sage Butterfly Gardener


I am joining Holly at Your Gardening Friend for Friday's Photo Blog Hop.

© copyright 2012 Michelle A. Potter

52 comments:

  1. What a great post and letter. Your images are gorgeous as always too. I hope the Pearly Sage listens because I miss winter too.

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    1. I really feel as if winter has not been here even though we have had a few ice storms and a few dustings of snow. This winter has really been like spring. I do go back and forth as to whether I should pine for winter or welcome spring.

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  2. I've already had enough. 2 weekend more or less trapped in the house, the gas tank nearly empty and the wook almost gone; no I'm not missing winter, bring on the spring.

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    1. In harsh cold and snowy winters, I have felt as you...hoping for some respite from the cabin fever and shoveling snow. Our winter here has been so strange. It has not been consistently warm but mostly warm. We will have an ice storm one day and a very sunny warm day the next. I suppose we always want what we do not have...

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  3. Poor winter. We talk on and on about waiting for spring, but rarely look forward to winter. I think he's gone for this year. Maybe next year he'll make an appearance. Cute post.

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    1. I think you may be right, Holley. I keep hoping for some sense of winter, and it does not come. Perhaps Old Man Winter will visit us next winter, and I will beseech him to make way for spring. :)

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  4. I'd put in a good word with Old Man Winter but he doesn't frequent these parts much at all. If I see him, I'll let him know he has a letter waiting for him from you. ;-)

    Cindy at Rosehaven Cottage

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    1. Thanks, Cindy. With the warmer temps, he may be vacationing over by you. :)

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  5. Old Man Winter has chosen not to spend time in Michigan this year. The great lakes aren't frozen and my snowshoes have seen no use. Now in your invitation to Mr. Winter, ask him to only visit through March. Come April, I am ready for green, not white.

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    1. The Winter Ball is scheduled between now and March 31st, so he won't be welcome afterwards. I will be ready for spring flowers by that time as well. Sometimes all this activity now draws me toward spring fever.

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  6. There hasn't been much rest this winter for the plants or gardeners. I don't like extended periods of cold weather but I do think if it is going to be very cold then it might as well snow and look pretty. Your letter is very eloquently written!

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    1. Thanks, Karin. I, too, worry about the plants and their lack of rest. If anything, they might have had a short nap. I hope that is enough to give them strength for the spring and summer.

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  7. Your letter to old man winter is fantastic.
    Overhere we had a cold winter spell but I can see that my plants and roses don't know anymore what season it is. In december and january springtemperatures and two weeks later deep frost.
    Have a lovely evening
    marijke

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    1. It has been very confusing. I don't know if I should start my spring chores or wait for that surprise snow storm.

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  8. We;ve had similar winter weather--more like early spring weather, actually. I certainly don't miss the blizzards and heavy snows we normally have, but I appreciate each season for what it is, and I do like winter. Beautiful pictures, as always.

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    1. I don't miss blizzards either, but it has been so wishy washy. I hope to appreciate whatever Old Man Winter brings, whether it be continued spring-like weather or some snowy landscapes.

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  9. It's supposed to be 70 tomorrow! Craziness! This winter has been unfullfilling. I need snow. Funy that you're starting blackberry lily seeds. A friend gave me blackberry lily seeds last fall that I sowed in a container on my patio so I wouldn't mistake them for weeds. I really hope they sprout! :o)

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    1. It is so different, and although I am trying to embrace this early spring, I am still holding out hope for a bit of winter. I think I was looking forward to that restful feeling of winter, and it has been scarce because it has felt more like spring than winter. The blackberry lilies have broken through the soil. Because I am not very familiar with them, it will be interesting to watch how they mature.

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  10. Beautiful images, and I too have missed "true" winter this year, but I hope that your letter doesn't get a response, at least here, as I am now ready for Spring!!

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    1. I know the feeling, Janet. I think spring is growing on me, but I could see having a couple of weeks of winter right now. By March, I may not want it as much anymore...

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  11. Fantastic shots. I love reading your post...

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    1. I am very glad you enjoyed it. I wonder if he will get my letter...perhaps he is on vacation and not receiving mail. :)

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  12. Though I am always ready for spring when it arrives, and I don't tolerate temps below freezing very well, I think we NEED winter - as your letter to Old Man Winter so wonderfully describes. We need the rest, we need the change. We have mild winters here, but still winters - this year, though, we've only had a few days here and there of very cold weather and no snow at all.

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    1. I think I need it, and I know the plants need it. It will be interesting to watch the plants through the year to see how they fare without having a true winter.

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  13. I would be in such trouble if winter decided to come now. Everything is out and in full bloom. Customers are shopping. I am stocking the nursery. Winter had its chance but it's too late now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    1. This weather has created confusion for us all.

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  14. Oh, Old Man Climate has played tricks this year! Our summer has been virtually non-existant. Now that the autumn plants are coming into bloom, the temperature has become hot (sigh). Each season certainly has its lessons for us...

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    1. There are lessons indeed this year. Lessons for nature, lessons for us all. Many times it seems as if we are on the precipice of something--be it winter's appearance at last or spring's early birth. Perhaps the lesson is to flow with the fluctuation even if it is day to day.

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  15. What a wonderful way of expressing your feeling, marvelous pictures and a letter which made me visualize a fairytale garden. They said climate change will make cold climes colder and hot climes hotter. That scares me to much as our dry seasons are really getting hotter and drier. However, when i see temperate bloggers complaining that they get warmer winter, i am hopeful that the effects of climate change should be reversed, as in colder climes to be hotter and hot climes to be colder. I hope you will agree, as we in the hot climates are already starting to rally and ask for signatures for His Highness Climate Godd to grant our deep request!

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    1. Thanks, Andrea. I know climate change is causing alterations to the way our climate has behaved in the past. I hope for all of us it is not too drastic. These warm summers have not been exclusive to this decade, so that gives me comfort that weather can be unpredictable even without the effects of climate change. The Wise Ones surely hear us...

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  16. What a beautiful post! When i read through you letter, i imagine a fairytale garden too!

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    1. Thanks, Malar. Perhaps Old Man Winter will bring that fairy tale garden here for an appearance.

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  17. Just enough snow for me this year...I wouldn't wish for more. I'd be happy if every winter was like this. Our winter hasn't been quite so changeable as yours. We've had a pretty steady layer of light snow. Perfect. Your photo of the Hellebore made me sigh. Love it!

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    1. I wish I could say the same. We have been very short on snow. I once loathed winter, but now I have come to welcome it. It has not really come this year...

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  18. Wonderful photos and letter Sage Butterfly! We have had a very mild winter here too . . . it has been so easy for the most part, though I am concerned for the climate change. I love your quote on your header. Happy weekend. Carol

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    1. Thanks, Carol. I hope this is just one of those things and not a true indication of the effects of climate change. I guess time will tell... Happy weekend to you, too!

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  19. I can't believe I'm saying this after the past two winters, but I've missed the snow, too. I don't think we've had even five inches all winter long! I do hope, though, that Old Man Winter gets your letter and replies soon--by mid-March I want to see Spring instead.

    I love these posts reflecting on words, and your images are beautiful.

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    1. Thanks, Rose. I think by some point in March I will be ready for spring as well. If he does respond to my invitation, I hope it is soon. I feel the pull towards spring, and yet, I yearn for winter. By March, I am almost certain much of that yearning will have waned...

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  20. Love the letter!

    I think I would like normal winters here in NC a little better if we had a little more snow. It's usually just cold and gray with no snow (since I grew up with snow, it still does not seem quite proper!) I must admit, I have rather liked the warm winter we've been having this year - me and the kids have been outside for much of it! I do worry about what it means for summer, though...

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    1. Thanks, Indie! I think snow helps to adorn the landscape during those leafless and lifeless winters. I have never lived in a place where the entire winter has snow, so when it does snow I become giddy with delight. We do usually have some snow, but this year we have only had a couple of dustings that melted the next day.

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  21. Yes, charming reflections and fun to connect and share.

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  22. Old Man Winter hardly paused to breathe on us this year, and we are so far gone into spring now, I hope he doesn't come back! Our largest snowfall ever was one year in March, however, so he could still have us on his visit list. Maybe he will stay a while with you, instead!

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    1. Perhaps you are right, Deb. We, too, have had severe snow storms in March some years. Although I am still holding out hope for a visit from Old Man Winter, I think by mid-March I may be embracing the coming of spring. Only time will tell...

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  23. What a beautiful touching post! Here in Ireland Winter has also just skipped lightly over us. I really enjoyed the last 2 "proper" Winters.

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    1. Bridget, I, too, enjoyed the last couple of winters where I feel they were true to the idea of winter. Sometimes I want to embrace the spring that seems to have been here throughout this winter, but then we will have a short cold snap. It has been confusing for me and probably for all the plants.

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  24. Beautiful post and pictures to accompany, however do forgive me if I don't share in your enthusiasm for a visit from the frosty one.

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    1. Thank you, Alistair. It is hard to predict what will happen...I suppose we will all observe the beauty and mystery that is the rhythms of nature.

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  25. Love it Michelle although I have had enough and the bulbs are beginning to bloom...I think he took a vacation or was quite under the weather this year...

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  26. Hi! Lovely images and so creative! I must say over here in the mountain west, the mountains have seen the Silver Majesty but that is it. The valley's are missing him and especially the lovely moisture he brings to the season. I guess maybe it is o.k. he took a bit of a break because now I realize how I can miss the Old Man Winter and some of his treasures!

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'I see trees of green, red roses, too
I see 'em bloom for me and for you
And I think to myself, what a wonderful world'
--What a Wonderful World

Thank you for visiting The Sage Butterfly blog. I enjoy reading your charming reflections very much. Have a great day!

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