First Real Snowfall

By O’Ceallaigh


Under normal circumstances we’d be in Florida by now. But, these are not normal circumstances by any means! Selling a house in New York is an experience! Add to that, try liquidating 38 years of stuff! But, we’ve already talked about all of that! Now, we’ve been trapped by the first real snowfall of the season!

“Whose woods these are, I think I know!
His house is in the village though!”

So begins Frost’s poem, “Stopping By A Woods on a Snowy Evening.”

It began yesterday. First the gray sky; the cold wind and then the wet heavy snow. Most of it melting as it hit the gravel drive and the blacktop road. It seemed to hang momentarily on the grass then disappear running down the blades and becoming little rivulets as I made my way.

“An Abbreviated walk today!” I thought. Too cold for a thin blooded Floridian! I’ll have to get used to it before I can linger out in the cold.

Then last night we were going out for a little get together at Alfie’s. It was with some of Kathy’s family that we wouldn’t be seeing for a while. I was looking forward to that! Alfie’s has a nice fireplace and on a night like this they certainly would have it active with a roaring fire!!

No. They didn’t. And besides, they put us in the middle room where the fireplace wasn’t and my feet were, and were freezing all night long! I’d wager that Robert Frost was warmer in his cutter, wrapped up in his lap robe that I was sitting at that table!

But, we certainly did enjoy the visit

Finally home, under the warm covers! “Ah, sleep! It is a gentle thing…!”

At about 0600, I was rudely awakened by my cold foot sticking out from under the comforter! In my somnambulistic stupor, I was trying to quiz myself on how that could have occurred. Finally, I forced myself awake enough to pull my foot back in and it felt so good! – “I think I’ll go back to sleep!”

Sleep! Come on! Sleep! It was no use. I tossed the covers back and crawled out of bed and stumbled out to the kitchen. All was darker than usual. The Sulfur lights in the neighbor’s yards weren’t shining into the kitchen. I looked out of the window over the kitchen sink.


I went to the table and picked up my glasses! Now I’m back at the sink. The sulfur lights are completely occluded by huge flakes of snow floating down past them being illuminated in that uniquely eerie winter-scape that I used to marvel at as a child!

“This is a real snowfall!” I thought to myself! “The first real one of the season! And I’m still up North! How did this happen?”

I always take my handful of pills at the kitchen sink when I first get up. This morning was no different. It gave me an opportunity to take the ambiance all in. I thought about Frost and his horse.

” Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.”Frost copy

Yes, Frost was there by somebody’s woods watching the snow fall. He was there with his little horse, listening to the silence.

I was there in my kitchen window enjoying it with him.

The First Real Snowfall of the Season.

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