The seasons change.
It doesn’t seem right, does it? That we find a pattern, fall into a routine, become comfortable, only to be disrupted – to suddenly realize that we have to change our shorts for pants and our lemonade for tea.
With or without our consent, they change. And we try our best to hold on to ourselves through these changes: through the allergies, the colds, the closing of the windows, the turning off of the fans. Yet, bundled up, we are somehow not the same.
I climbed these mountains with your words on my back.
Your words. From your mouth, to my ears, to my brain, to my heart. The ones you told me to keep forever.
The leaves turn. They fall. And no matter how beautiful it is, they are still dying. They are still leaving the trees bare, empty, and naked to the bitter air. We take our pictures, and jump into piles, and bake our apple pies. But the change is all around us. Autumn. It’s for the indecisive. The inconsistency of it all settles nicely with them.
Those words. They crept up my spine with your hands and left a trail of goosebumps in their wake.
Your words settled under my skin and stayed with me, seeping into me as you held me down and gave me reasons to depend. They circulated through my bloodstream, as if your voice alone was keeping my heart beating.
The leaves keep falling. They keep dying.
Without my consent, those words turned to dead weight. They began to rest heavy on my lungs. Wrapping around my neck, throttling me. Pinning me down, folding me in on myself with every step I took.
We try, but are never truly prepared for the first snow. The ruthless cold and the biting wind screech, uninvited, into the marrow of our bones. We switch our long-sleeve shirts for sweaters and our sneakers for boots, somehow surprised by the overwhelming white.
The silence of snowfall startles us, rendering us immobile in wonder. The spotless, new, sparkling reflection of light everywhere we turn. Our cheeks aching from the wind, we stand by as the world keeps spinning, and we try to catch a glimpse of the dizzying beauty.
We stay still, trying to preserve the sudden calm, the crisp and peaceful veil resting on our landscape. But the slow exhale of crystalized breath, our sighs of relief, are drowned out by the footprints, the snowplows, the cars, and the bodies. They rush through and tarnish the white, churning the once immaculate drifts into grey mud. Refreezing and melting in the harsh winter light, it turns to slush. And we begin closing our blinds to what used to be a blinding beauty, but is now just another mess.
We wait for rebirth. We wait for the ground to thaw and for the grass to peak through. We wait for the dead, frozen leaves to decompose and give the flowers room to grow. We exchange our heavy coats for t-shirts, hesitantly. As if we are still expecting the cold.
We watch the change, and we see the beauty.
Yes, I have climbed these mountains with your words on my back. They have spread across me like a disease, like a forest fire. And they have disintegrated, momentarily turning it all black. But from the decomposition, a new breath will come.
And so the seasons change. They change, and we stand helpless at our windows, hoping we will be prepared.
The seasons change.