On a bimonthly basis, I send a Tiny Letter newsletter to my subscribers. The Tiny Letter is a personal, and more focused attempt to bring you reflections and writing prompts. In the most recent edition, I’m exploring finding God in all things, which is not to say finding God in the everyday or the mundane. (It’s a fine distinction but one worth teasing out.)
Diana Trautwein read my latest Tiny Letter and wrote,
In the last few of those letters, he has begun to do what he once did for a small group of email friends — provide inspiration for writing on a topic. Today’s letter inspired these thoughts and THIS is what I need in my writing life right now. (Link.)
Today, I’m giving you a little taste of the Tiny Letter. If you like what you read, and if you’d like to read the piece in its entirety, SIGN UP BY FOLLOWING THIS LINK!
On more brittle mornings, the fields between Highway 45 and the offset subdivisions of Middle-America are washed omni-pale. Frost robs the Ozark valleys of the Kodachrome nuance of spring, summer, and autumn. Winter reduces everything to shades of black and pale, or paler, or even paler still. Pale is the color of monotony, of driving the highway because driving the highway is what one does in the winter. Winters are for work, for school, for church obligations. Pale is the color of obligation.
The boys and I huddle against this creaking cold, sit in the car waiting for the ice to thaw against the scrish-shaw scrish-shaw of the windshield wipers. Ian scoots into the middle seat, buckles and says, “could we not listen to music this morning? Could we just talk or think on the way to school?” I’m a believer in white-space, in buffer zones between the noises of here and there. I agree, and our tires crunch gravel as we descend into the low and frozen frog.
As we cross the bridge, I consider the White River. The frost dips down into emerald-green waters. (Iridescent from what? From mineral runoff? From leaching pesticides?) The constant motion of the water is the river’s defense against freezing. I consider the metaphors, or rather try, except my own noggin hasn’t yet thawed, and instead of pulling a poem or a phrase from this river run, I hum, “Row, row, row your boat, gently down the stream.”
On some mornings, trivialities are my speciality.
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