we had our first hard frost this week- 27 degrees - being from ohio, i sometimes laugh
at myself, but it felt really cold! chalk it up to almost 30 years in the south, and this
drafty old house with its skating-rink floor. it is old-house-chill as well as a certain color
dullness outdoors that confirms winter is settling in. i gain new arm strength, as the
occasional fires become a daily ritual. there is cozy comfort in the heater's steady work,
but it requires braving the cold to go out first thing in the morning for more wood.
no matter how much i carry in the evening before, i seem to burn it outdoors
at dawn is part of the ritual, too.

even though we have evergreen piney woods instead of mostly bare hardwoods, our
winter landscape seems muted. after weeks of more rain, we enjoyed a few golden
sunny days. last week it hit almost 70... with air-conditioning back on for the Christmas shoppers. that night, it dropped to 30, a much more seasonal feeling in the air. i have
said this before- december in middle ga. is so variable that you can often take a pleasant
walk after Christmas dinner, in shorts! this year, i think it will progress in a more reasonable,
seasonable manner towards our "very" cold snap in january... all is in the greenhouse;
the bonsai are safely tucked under the benches, with a deep leaf mulch covering their
small pots, and my orchids are beginning to bloom beside my reading chair.

since i must use words instead of a camera, i am posting some recent impressions
of the season, as we approach the the solstice and the shortest day. it seems perfect
timing that Christmas arrives with the returning of the Light.

Best greetings to youall from patagonia farm...
peace and joy now and in the coming year!!

vty, j-lea

- winter haiku -

wild hollyberries,
redbirds' bright scarlet flash in
dun-colored landscape.

delicate ice spikes
edging the deep bronze oak leaves
frosty white morning.

summer tomatoes'
limp gray-green tresses waving
in the winter winds.

round frozen fishpond
a mirror for dazzling stars
in the velvet sky.

- perfect Birth -

in starry silence,
while the whole world lies dreaming
in perfect stillness...

About johanna_lea

Blogging since 2003, writing about a lifelong love of gardening since 1998, I am now surprised to find myself extending into photography and creating digital art! I find it hard to pick a favorite plant or style, I love them all.
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Hi Ilona. Loved the haiku. Very nice.

Where are you living? I thought you were in central Ohio?

Rob (ourfrenchgarden) said...

Season's greetings to you.

Well it all sounds snug. I'm burning wood as if it's going out of fashion at the moment.

One thing, don't ever publish a photo. I like the picture I have.


Ilona said...

Hi Coneflower- the haiku and the report hail from 'Johanna Lea' in Georgia. She is my childhood friend who is an accomplished gardener, organic farmer, artist, and poetess.

I will give you an update about my Ohio domains soon.

With Rob I appreciate J.'s prose.
But I have to say, Rob, you haven't seen her photography. She doesn't have digital but has long taken evocative photos. I think some of my favorites were of old rundown Georgia barns.

Perhaps someday... some of those will make it online in some venue.

johanna_lea said...

you are all so generous..thankyou
very much. today i feel like i got an "A"!!
ilona, so very many old cabins and rustic fallen down barns here
in ga...i couldnt photograph them
all in TWO lifetimes...there's
a gem around every corner!

and rob,words are paintbrushes,too...
merry Christmas to all and so very
very important, peace on earth!

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