I have been in a dry season of writing.
My exhaustion has been high under the constant threat of fascism taking over our state government, and fighting for the common good. Words have felt sparse as I battle the persistent, ever-present overwhelm that confronts us all. Words have felt essential, and elusive all in the same breath.
I have slowly felt myself beginning to sink back in, quietly, and gradually.
I realized I am entering mud season in more ways than one.
The late winter and early spring in Vermont, Maine, and NH gives way each year to a mysterious fifth season that the locals call “mud season.” If you know, you know. There is a time each late winter, and early spring when inexplicably mud is everywhere.
The ground can freeze so hard in the winter that when the snow really melts on those teaser days of spring, there is nowhere for the water to go. It cannot sink back into the ground, so everything begins to turn to mud. It is a waiting season, and a wading season. Our boots, pants, and socks are crusted with the telltale signs of wading through it as we wait for the earth to re-form, and take shape anew for spring.
I feel a bit like this in my writing too right now. I have been snowed in, frozen solid, with new words unable to break forth. Slowly, I am beginning to wade through the muck, the new shape and form of something new ahead of me, but I don’t quite know fully what yet. It is illusive.
Collectively, it seems we are also in a bit of a mud season. Covid-19 has gripped our lives for the last two years. Pandemics of racism, transphobia, and more also persist. The gasping, resurgent, dying breaths of white supremacy are blowing through hard. For a week or so we had the promise of imminent vaccines for our tiny babies under five years old, and now it is back to the drawing board. We are stuck in the muck, wading slowly while our boots get stuck at about every third step, and the fragile hope of new possibilities has not fully begun to take shape. Much like the water from winter’s frosts and snow sits precariously close to the surface unable to fully absorb, so too are our own emotions these days. Nerves are frazzled, our edges and patience are frayed, souls are weary, and joy can feel too illusive.