Have you ever seen Christmas lights that hang like icicles from the eves of houses? Looking out our kitchen window I am watching our neighbor's sway back and forth as the wind and snow batter them. Our automobiles are entombed in a casket of snow, and the gnarly grape vines along our fence are now woven strands of purest white.
Up the street a towering fir tree's branches sag under their wintry load. At the mouth of our driveway, the street light provides just enough illumination for the erratic orbits of a thousand snow flakes to reflect its glow. Two twisted, yellowed, frozen fingers of ice stretch from its glass rim, and look like they want to claw at the ground beneath them.
The floors of our house shudder as the heavy blades of snowplows rumble and bounce along the frozen roadways trying to muscle their way through the steadily falling snow. Vehicle passageways are becoming like the constricted arteries of a diseased heart, and traffic is forming clots.
Things are stirring in my neighbor's front yard. It appears the entire family has been conscripted to fight the battle of driving back this ferocious advance of winter. Shovels full of snow are flying every which way.
For the past couple of hours, I have been watching a giant, inflated Santa Clause bob and weave like a cagey boxer, ducking the hammer blows of a boisterous wind. Oops! Saint Nick just disappeared -- a knock out punch? No, apparently my neighbors pulled the plug on him!
Outside the world is black and white -- like a giant photo negative -- except for a tiny tree wrapped in strands of multicolored lights.