Here be Midnight

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Quiet Wintering

As a very special mid-Winter solstice approaches and people plan their celebrations for Christmas, a new year and the return of longer daylight hours, I find myself wishing for more darkness. 

I love the quiet of the long nights, an open fire and a story or two. There is an air of peace and stillness in these evenings that the summer months cannot conjure in the same way. 
The day's Winter light is so beautifully soft and gentle that those Autumn leaves, still reluctant to fall ground-wards, seem to glow from within. Like Nature's own fairy lights, they seemingly rest in mid-air.
In this month I delight in filling my home with greenery. The Holly and the Ivy,  traditionally a symbol of Summer life in the darkness, for me, are just an excuse to blur the edges between  the inside and outside, inviting the forest into my home, helping to satiate a compulsion to rest amongst wood, green and earth. 
Our modern Christmas, if we are not careful, fills this time of peace and quiet into a mad rush of stressful spending and dutiful visits, as though we had no other time in the year to show our love and appreciation. 
The painting below betrays my feelings towards this untimely hustle and bustle. Like a bear forced to come out of hibernation I am prone to grumpiness, but it is difficult to ignore Nature's fine  vessel in which we travel through the seasons and the beauty that surrounds us.

A fine vessel filled with the Festive Spirit


  1. A beautiful post, I do love the images your words conjure up, i too find much peace & comfort in these long dark evenings, tucking in & thinking deep. We are just in from collecting our own greenery to fill the cottage & with the tree standing proud i to love the connection & blurring with nature inside & out.

    1. Thank you Ruthie, so nice to meet a fellow Winter-lover. Today I woke to the sound of rain on the window and looked out to see layers of grey...It brings me such a feeling of joy and an almost uncontrollable urge for a walk. I love the wind the wet and the cold. It enlivens my soul whilst I'm in it and when I return home it makes the fireside more welcoming.
      Can't help feeling your corner of the world might do a long Winters night a little better than Hampshire. The West coast of Scotland is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been..there is a cottage there with my name on it...I know it.

    2. Im so slow, only just getting round to replying! But I had to pop by and say I love the thought you have of a wee cottage somewhere with your name on it :) I wonder where on the West Coast of Scotland you went?

    3. Hello :), talk about perfect timing. I've just come back from Scotland - Ardnamurchan, Sheildaig, Gairloch. I'm house hunting as I type. Whats Dumfries and Galloway like I wonder - is 'The Old Burrow' somewhere in your neck of the woods I wonder?

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you so much, I really needed to hear that today.
      I'm just sketching pictures for boxes.....maybe music boxes?! :)

  3. I like this! It's so wonderful! I can almost hear the boat/sledge is saying something snappy to the dwarf! : )

  4. Yes! Yes! So glad it ensnared your imagination...the viewer is an intrinsic part of the story...keeping it alive and dynamic. Wonderful!