Birthday retrospective / by Christina Rosalie

BirthdayIn the fields, ice glitters like fish scales snared in the stubble of corn. The river flooded its banks last week. A January thaw, and now the outlying fields are a morass of ice and sloughed off hunks of snow, stained black with silt and mud. The ground heaves. The ice breaks, and pitches up vertically among the mowed stalks. The winter light plays across it; unexpected iridescence.

In the summer corn grew tall here, and driving slowly with the windows down you could smell it: sweet and starchy; each ear growing fat in the secret shade of leaves and silky tassels. The river was brown and slow. The sun high; the heat supple.

Now the wind bites at my cheeks, and I bring steaming buckets of fresh water to the coop where the hens peck about listlessly among the litter. Spilled water on my jeans hardens to ice. Snow is in the forecast again. A sundog dogs the sun.

In the house, the air is floral and fragrant with scent of cooking fruit: pear-apple sauce. The stove is fat with embers. The cat is lazy. The to-do list is a hundred miles long.


I wanted to launch my project over at Kickstarter on my birthday—but a storm the night before brought down a huge tree on our road (a pine with a glorious crown of roots almost two yards across--up-ended unceremoniously, smashing smack into our phone and internet line) reminding me how small we always are in the scope of things. And also: my inlaws drove off our ice-slick driveway and then managed to get our truck stuck too (trying to get their car out!) wheel-well deep in mud and melting snow... so the morning of my birthday DH and I spent a fun (really, it was!) hour winching vehicles out of mud. I love that we work so well as a team.

So here it is Thursday and on the windowsill are a dozen scarlet tulips from my guy, each one the fierce color of my heart. When the sun breaks through the clouds, they almost make me catch my breath. Each petal illumined, gorgeous, risqué, and utterly out of place against the backdrop of naked poplars and maples: a tableau of gray on gray against the cloud strewn winter sky.

First: a birthday list.

Second: I’m going to launch my project this weekend hopefully.

It’s going to be fantastic. With your help, that is. Truly: the only reason I would have ever dreamed this up is because of YOU.

Third: a birthday wish. I'm declaring my own personal Delurking Day. Say hi. Share: who you are, how long you’ve been reading, and one of your favorite moments in your day.