Winter's Return

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Winter’s Return
A leaf blown off a tree in late fall, my breathe fades, a mist in the cold air. A once beautiful place now turned into a lifeless wasteland. The plants now frozen, the atmosphere sounds different; hollow, empty. There are no children playing near the swings, or moms handing lunch to them as they run by. The distant cry of a child who just scraped there knee is now absent, replaced by the morbid echo of a long cold winter ahead. Off in the distance, just on the other side of the hill, a creek flows, its sound relaxing. The frigid water runs off the water fall. A strong wind blows a pile of leaves over the dead, brown grass. A crow, one of my only companions, perching on a pine on my side of the creek lets out a pounding song, then flaps its wings and leaves me, black feathers slowly fall to the ground. A gunshot ringing out in the distance tells the tale of a successful late season hunter, claiming his whitetail. As the evening turns into night, the sunset creeping behind the mountain, the temperature drops, chilling gusts of wind produce the sound of winter bellowing through the valley. Frost forms over the streetlights, dimming the town as everyone sleeps. A frozen twig falls from a branch, a sound never noticeable before. A snowflake or two begin to fall, landing on the road and melting in seconds, the ground not frozen yet. The bare trees complement the beautiful emptiness of the town. Shops were closed, and the light from the houses’ living rooms created a glow on the edge of it. The crack of a freezing tree alerts me, when I look up, I see a homeless man, crouching next to a tree, ready to endure what he had endured many a winter. As I leave the park, I gave him my coat. As I left the park, the wasteland of winter, already longing for my warm bed, I saw the crow flying above me. Like it always had, when I left the park, winter followed me.





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