A widow reflects on how she used to spend her long winter nights
|The snow falls over the world outside the window, smoothing over the rough edges of this world with a cold softness. The moonlight hits it, causing an elegaic glow to fall over the whole world. The ghostly light illuminates the night sky, covering every star. I can't help but think of you on nights like this, well, hell, I can't help but think of you every night. But on this night in particular, I remember how you loved the snow, watching fall outside our windows as you sat in your flannel PJs and slippers.
We used to curl under that afgan your mother made for us, while we sipped your famous hot chocolate from scratch. It didn't matter how low the temperature got, we just cuddled closer together and told stories from our childhood, our past, that we had both heard a million times, but never tired of. Sometimes, if we were brave, we'd bundle up like a pair of penguins and walk together in the snow, in the quiet of the night, and it was like we were the only two people in the world, and we liked it that way. I felt safe on your arm, as if nothing, not the cold, or dark, or death itself, could touch me when you were so close.
When it got late, and we hurried into bed, hoping to snuggle under the down comforter and get warm quickly, I loved the hours we'd spend talking while we attempted to drift off to sleep. I'd lay my head on your chest and feel the soft waffle of the thermal shirt you always wore. The smell of you, the unmistakable scent that I have never been able to replicate in nature, filled my lungs and dissipated into my very soul, forcing a smile to my lips despite the cold. Your strong, steady heartbeat set the pace for all my good dreams, like a drum of joy that metered every thought. I was safe there, and I was happy.
Now the cold flakes are covering your stone, and I no longer have the comforting atmosphere of you and your love, but even the coldest, deepest snow in my life cannot make me forget those warm nights drinking hot chocolate with you.