It’s a little disconcerting. The cornstalks in surrounding fields have long-since crispened and browned; for days now the typically quiet countryside has growled with the mauling mouths of combines hurrying to gather in the crop before snow flies. The garden looks more dormant and drab by the day. The firs, pines and cedars — by now expecting to assert their verdant monopoly on the season — are confused and jealous.
What, then, to make of this persistence? After all, though Kermit the Frog of Muppets fame had other reasons for confessing it, it can’t be that easy for the grass either — “Bein’ Green.” There is little enough sun these days to encourage it, the hours becoming briefer with the changing season. More and more frequently we wake to frost on the ground and the sight of our breath in the air. Inside, the fireplace has helpfully added warmth by day, extra blankets encourage closer snuggling by night, and flannels and corduroys have replaced linens and cottons throughout the hours between. Is it willful pride — the turf’s smug resolve to hang on as long as it can, like a rebellious toddler refusing to go to bed?
Or is it nature’s testament of resilient grace — that though winter is coming and will surely blanket and paralyze us for what will seem to be “forever”, spring will be reliably and close behind.
Let’s go with that. Generally speaking, I’ve come to trust that, whatever the alternative options, grace is reliably the preferable choice. If the grass wants to assert it as well, who am I to argue?
Whenever winter chooses to arrive, then, I’ll welcome it for the temporary shiver that it is, having heard it on good authority that it won’t be the final word.