writing

Snowy Owl Lane – New Year

Part Five

Suzy brushed off her boots on the front porch, knocking off the clumps of icy sleet and snow. White crisp snow blanketed the meadow and their drive. The skies were gray with winter.

She looked back down the drive, relieved the snows had waited until their holiday guests left. They were now snowed in. Suzy didn’t mind one bit.

She opened the storm door they had installed to replace the screen door, then slipped out of her boots and stood on the threshold. Slowly, she opened up the front door, trying not to wake the napper on the sofa.

He’d had a long night writing out all the thoughts which filled his mind the night before. There were days she would do the same, staying up late or waking up early with a mind swirling with imagery or thoughts, dreams and visions.

She softly closed the door and made her way to the kitchen. Quiet and kitchen didn’t usually go together, but she needed to warm herself up, so she made herself a cup of cocoa, then slid into one of the dining table chairs and opened her tablet.

Now it was her turn to write on this quiet afternoon on the first day of the new year. She looked out the window towards the frozen stream. A blue jay sat on their outdoor table. She loved watching birds, really any kind. She was amazed at how they could fly with so little effort.

She often found inspiration to write in small things, flowers, birds, nature. Today, however, she sought inspiration from the history of their home. She picked up a journal and opened it. The cover was inscribed with Sylvia Miller’s initials, and the year, 1918. She opened the journal and began to read:

Today is the first day of 1918. Last year was a rough year for us, but Hirsch keeps us strong. My hope is 1918 brings us much prosperity and joy.

It’s snowing this New Year’s day. I get lost in the beauty of freshly fallen snow. There is a peace which only comes this time of year.

Mary selected a suitor to marry. I do hope Jon is a good match for sweet Mary. Jon was so nervous when he asked Hirsch for her hand. Jon comes from a good family, a hard working one from down the way.

We worry though that Jon may need to serve in the great war. I hope it doesn’t happen for a while if he does; we’d love to hold the wedding in the meadow for Mary when the weather is warmer and the flowers in bloom. She will make a beautiful bride.

Suzy looked up from the journal and looked around their quiet home. The tree was still up from the holidays, twinkling lights making the living room seem magical. The snow outside started falling again and Suzy’s mind spun up a wintery tale. Her fingers went to work on the keyboard with such speed, it seemed her fingers were chasing the story her mind was spinning.

An hour passed in the blink of an eye. Steve woke up from his nap and looked toward the dining area. Suzy was almost in silhouette, the afternoon’s winter sun streaming through the westward facing window. He gazed at her for several minutes, amazed at how she could have such concentration. Her mouth twitched up as she worked through the plot of her story. It could be an unpleasant expression, but he loved when she was so engrossed. He knew being consumed by your imagination could be cathartic for the heart and mind.

Suzy finally came out of her mind with a blink and a shift in her seat. She felt like she was being watched and slowly turned her head. “Good afternoon, sleepy head,” she cooed.

Steve just looked at her, one of his come here stares. Suzy’s story had come to a stopping point and she looked forward to the break. She clicked save and set the tablet aside, then walked over and sat on the floor, next to the sofa, resting her arm along his chest and leaning her head against his heart.

“Did you have a good visit with all our family?” she asked, looking at him.

“Of course, but I really wasn’t ready for your mom. Wow.” Steve replied.

“Yep, I know. Thank you for being patient. I’m like her in some ways, but completely not like her in others. I think the girls had a good time though. Do you?” A little squinting around Suzy’s eyes popped up when she asked.

“Yes, I think their visit went really well. It’s nice how they have warmed up while they were here. See, I told you to relax and not worry.” Steve paused a moment, looking for words. Finally, he just asked, “What would you think if either of the girls asks to have their wedding here?”

Suzy’s eyes lit up and she smiled ear to ear. “Definitely! I’ll do anything I can to make each of their days special. You know that, right?”

He shook his head yes as her fingers caressed his cheek. He took her hand and kissed it, then gave her the look…The look that melted her heart every time. He pulled her up on the sofa atop him and they rang in the new year again.

It’s going to be a good year.

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