Deep White

Snowshoe to work.  Snow like frozen waves across the field. Buds frost spiked.  Brush wolf tracks across watering hole. Startling green watercress.
Patterns emerge amid lengthening days.  More storms blow through, the world is blue tinged inside where windows are blocked by snowdrifts.  The wind whistles high through a crack in the door. A pair of ravens perch in the elm tree by my forge; they talk to each other in resonant woody clicks and rub beaks. They call out then fly off noiselessly as I walk out onto the path cut through chest deep snow.


The days alternate between relative warmth, just above the freezing point, and crushing cold and wind.  There is a stark beauty in the snow covered world, wind sculptures and crazy lines and cornices adorn stream edges and open spaces, while buildings and trees are muffled  and submerged.




The pattern welding can be seen in the sword blades. I have been busy with snowstorms, parenting, and preparing for a course I am teaching in Britain at the end of the month, so progress has been slow.  Soon spring will come, winter will loose her grip on the land and there will be time to make up lost work. Late winter can be a time of struggle, the weather constantly throwing obstacles in ones path that have to be laboriously removed, elders lose strength and will, and dark dreams flutter at the edge of sleep.  The only way to weather the cold is to get out in it and enjoy the snow, sliding off roofs and digging snow tunnels has occupied our weekends, there is wonder in this magnificent white-throned world; we must seize it or be submerged in drifts of blue white entropy.


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Jake Powning

Jake is a professional swordsmith, artist, and writer who explores the strange place where traditional culture and the land meet.

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