The Snow Nymph

The nor’wester blows.  Summer-like heat bruises the body; compresses the air within.     Barely emerged from winter chill, not yet accustomed to the freshness of spring on my shoulders, I flail under hot air and bluster.  Bring back the southerly, I wail; a gentle one, dipped in iced water, iced with snow, one that I can enjoy like an ice cream cone.

Some of you will remember that, a few months back,  my daughter was hospitalised. She has been out of hospital for a while now. She is working slowly towards a better state of well-being. In recent days she has been able to return to writing poetry and has felt strong enough to publish one poem on her new blog, where she goes by the lovely name of ousel. If you would like to read her poem, The Snow Nymph, you can find her  here    I confess that I don’t always understand my daughter’s poems because they are full of allusions and references which are beyond my small brain, but I always find them beautiful. 🙂

Afterword:

The michelia in my photo is very bedraggled as a result of our capricious weather. It seems to be flowering far too early, this year.  Last year it didn’t flower till late August/early September.

And a special note for Steve , at Portrait of Wildflowers, who teaches me new words, almost daily: the corolla of my  michelia is fugacious, as fugacious as this summer heat in early spring.

Tomorrow, our temperatures are expected to return to more normal ones for the beginning of August. The michelia is likely to be bitten by frost. 😦

© silkannthreades

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103 thoughts on “The Snow Nymph

  1. SwittersB

    Very beautiful. Equally beautiful for me: my dear departed Mom was the only person in my entire life that used the word Gallivant or Gallivanting. I have never, in too many years to count, seen it in print or heard another soul use the word! You have touched a deep pocket in my heart from so long ago. 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      How very special to hear that. Gallivanting is a word we often use in my family and my extended family; possibly came through my mother. It is an old-fashioned word. For fun, my sister and I will often change gallivant to gaily-vant because we go gaily when we gallivant. It’s a great word. I am glad it was a word your mother used. It’s a happy word.

      Reply
      1. Cynthia Reyes

        Gallivanting is a word we’ve used in my family for aeons, and still do.
        the way we use it, it’s a usually fond way of talking about going for a fun walk, or enjoyably and leisurely going from one place to another. Or of teasing someone who went off on a purposeless jaunt. I love the word, as I do your blog, Gallivanta!

        Hope your poet daughter continues to commit poetry.

        Reply
        1. Gallivanta Post author

          How lovely that gallivanting is a word experienced by your family too. It’s a joyful word. I was gallivanting at the weekend. Such fun.

  2. shoreacres

    It took me a moment to figure out that your lovely michelia is kin to our southern magnolia. I thought at first it was a gardenia, because of the profusion of blooms. Not so! Our magnolias have impressive flowers, often the size of dinner plates, but there are far fewer of them. I think I prefer yours.

    I do still have to stop and reorient myself over phrases like “cooler southerlies,” and the thought that spring is arriving for you soon. We’ve been blessed this year with a not-so-dreadful summer, but it’s beginning to heat up now, and I’m not at all fond of the humidity.

    I’m so glad your daughter has posted some of her poetry, and that you were gracious enough to share the link with us. I did read “The Snow Nymph,” but I also read the one about peonies, and that’s where I left my comment.

    Speaking of words, I had to laugh when I came across “detritus” in “The Snow Nymph.” That’s a word that’s going to be a small part of another post. I didn’t get it straight in my mind until I read it in another blog, in 2009. How I can remember a word from a blog, five years ago, but have to spend an hour looking for my car keys last Sunday morning is beyond me.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      The michela really is delightful. The perfume is milder than the gardenia and I prefer it. There are magnolia grandiflora in the neighbourhood. They are magnificent, but, of course, far too large for my small garden. I am pleased you read my daughter’s poems. I prefer the Peony poem; well, it was written for me! I am looking forward to your ‘detritus’ post. And, indeed, how do we remember words from long ago, and yet forget where the keys are or, as was the case for me today, forget to add the walnuts ( right in front of me) to the cake! Shakes head and sighs.

      Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thanks Alex. Glad you enjoyed my daughter’s poem and the michelia. The michelia has, much to my surprise, done quite well in recent frosts. Perhaps it is hardier than I thought.

      Reply
  3. Tiny

    I’m very happy your daughter is doing so much better. It’s great she’s writing beautiful poetry too. It’s healing in itself. Blessings to both of you and I hope your spring will shape up nicely!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you Tiny. Spring is behaving ever so nicely today. It has prompted the first blossom on my apricot tree. And all is how I feel it should be at the beginning of August.

      Reply
  4. KerryCan

    Buffeted and bruised, flowers and daughters. It’s good to hear that your daughter is doing so much better–like you, I’m not sure I fully understand the poem but it seems hopeful to me. She uses words in beautiful ways.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Kerry, sometimes I don’t understand poems but I feel them. I feel this one and I enjoy the sound and movement of the words. Another reader said she read this poem by throwing out a ribbon( not a real ribbon) and following it as she wound it up. I really liked that inventive approach; seemed to be a good way to read my daughter’s poetry.

      Reply
  5. Marylin Warner

    I am so glad your daughter is doing better, Gallivanta. Nothing is harder on us as mothers than when our child is ill. I went to her blog and read “The Snow Nymph”–a marvelous poem by a talented writer–she has her mother’s gift of words.

    Reply
  6. Leya

    Beautiful poem – but hard to understand. I can see from where she has got her way with words. I visited Steve as well – brilliant photography.

    Reply
  7. Just Add Attitude

    I am very pleased (for you) that your daughter is out of hospital and is working her way along the road to recovery.

    I too am tone deaf when it comes to poetry – I love the medium without understanding its intricacies. Your daughters poem is a beautiful melange of words.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you for your good wishes for my daughter, Juliet. It’s very sad to see my beautiful michelia looking so bruised. But it usually blooms for quite a while so, maybe, some of the later blooms will be just fine. It’s hard to be perfect all the time. 😉

      Reply
  8. cindy knoke

    I am following your daughter now. What a beautiful poem and what a beautiful, gentle spirit she has, just like her mother. I am so happy she is writing, feeling improved, and blogging! She will make so many friends and they will give her such positive energy that will be oh so therapeutic for her. Besides she has talent and should post her work. As a mom I happy for you and so glad you post about this too. Helps everyone who struggles, and quite frankly, all the best people struggle! Hugz my friend. I am going to go see if I can comment on your daughter’s post now…..

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Hugs to you dear Cindy. What a good friend you are. I am hoping for some more of her poems too. I know she has a lot of unfinished ones, waiting for that final word to fall in to place so it can be released into the world.

      Reply
  9. thecontentedcrafter

    Another beautifully written post dear Gallivanta. I love that word ‘fugacious’ and have not heard it or used it myself in a very long time! I remember when you were so troubled for your daughter and am pleased to hear she is refinding herself. I shall visit her blog to read her poem.

    We have enjoyed very warm days here in the far south too, though I see some frosts are forecast and a return to cooler days is likely. Perhaps it was a promise for a nicer summer this year…….?

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Oh, I do hope we have a nice summer, preferably without too many nor’westers. In the meantime, I must work harder at enjoying what’s on offer. Nothing’s perfect. Not even the weather. 😉

      Reply
  10. diannegray

    I’d love to visit your daughter’s blog and will when I’m back online. I’m having really annoying issues with my computer and looking for someone to fix it or to buy a new one. Hopefully I’ll be back to full e-strength soon 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you Maureen. My daughter has a very deep understanding of poetry,( types, rhymes, metres), that I do not have. I am the poetry equivalent of tone-deaf.

      Reply
  11. gpcox

    The poem is lovely and I told her so. Also, Steve’s site is new to me. So, that’s our Gallivanta – giving us great posts and new friends!

    Reply
  12. Letizia

    It’s tough when it gets too warm and then the frost returns. My magnolia suffered tremendously from this last year – losing all of its lovely flowers (they turned a horrible brown and then fell off).

    p.s. I have chose to go with “scone” as in “Ron” in your honour 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Yes, it’s horrible to see the plants, particularly the magnolias, when they get blighted by frost. I have 3 big beautiful magnolia blooms out at the moment. I am not sure they will survive the predicted cold this week. What fun that you are going to say Scone like Ron!

      Reply
  13. restlessjo

    I’m kind of multi-tasking and it’s not working very well, Ann. As I started to read this post my eye was caught by ‘music to my ears’ in your sidebar. I put it on- what a beautiful interpretation! And the Commonwealth Games are drawing to a conclusion so I have half an eye on them too.
    I’m glad things are better for your daughter. I’ll go and visit with her 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Multi-tasking…why never. 😉 Whoever does that? 😀 I feel as though I could have written that comment myself, about myself. So glad you were side-tracked by the Lark Ascending. It is beautiful; particularly that interpretation. And, thank you, for visiting my daughter’s blog. Only the words are distracting over there. 😉

      Reply
  14. utesmile

    They do look lovely…I would have thought they are early! Glad your daughter is better and starts writing again. I am not good with poetry and understanding it either…:-)

    Reply
  15. Poetsmith

    Glad to hear that your daughter has returned to writing poetry. It must be very encouraging for her to start a blog. Hope the spring weather will bring on some lovely blossoms for you! 🙂

    Reply
  16. Coulda shoulda woulda

    Just read the poem. We’ll there is certainly a literary gene. She is a great poet and I don’t say that lightly. I will read it again and I have a fave line about the icicle bit but I am glad things seem to be getting on track.

    Reply
    1. April

      Oh–and I don’t understand my daughter’s poetry either. She wrote something once, and I about had a heart attack. I immediately got on the phone to ask her what the intent of her poem, because I didn’t understand it. I got a huge sigh, and I’m sure an eye roll. Her response was…it’s a poem.

      Reply
      1. Gallivanta Post author

        LOL! Usually I am the one doing the eye-roll and my daughter is doing the sigh. But it’s nice they still think we have the potential to understand what they write.

        Reply
  17. BEAUTYCALYPSE

    I absolutely share the opinion of one of the commenters: the love for word must run in the family. I’m really happy for you and the good news and I wish you a soft and sunny springtime. over here, the august heat has risen like a scary dragon, and everybody hides in the shadows.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Nath, I think the love of words does run in the family, particularly the wider family. I found the unusual heat here a trifle scary because it was so out of place. Whilst you are hiding in the shadows, check your email for a bit of fun from me. Even though it is barely spring, the email will show that I am thinking about my summer signature style. 🙂

      Reply
  18. Lavinia Ross

    Quick note, Gallivanta. Found your daughter’s website, and Steve’s. Will take a closer look tomorrow, as I have 2 music shows today, both outside, and it is supposed to be 90 degrees here. I’ll be ready for the Long Nap when I get home. Lovely posts by you, and Kiwisoar, as always. Thoughts of cool breezes….

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Dear Lavinia, I hope your music shows are going well, despite the heat. We are cooler today, but in the gentle way I wanted. 🙂 Steve’s site is brilliant. My daughter’s is just brand new.

      Reply
        1. Gallivanta Post author

          Right! Taking off my mother hat and hearing you loud and clear. Thank you. Mother hat goes back on. Thank you, on behalf of my daughter, the gifted poet. 🙂

  19. pleisbilongtumi

    I am glad to hear your daughter is back to write the poetry and I have came to her blog to see it. As you said, I found her poem is gorgeous. Yet made someone like me sunk in to the words full of mystery. Unlike her mother composing words bound by the rules which sounds mild and earthy. I love Michelia (Magnolia) and its scent. 🙂

    Reply
  20. YellowCable

    I am glad to hear your daughter has been out of the hospital. Your daughter’s poem seems like story or fairly tale. I like it but I wish I understand more.

    Hope plants in your garden survive the up/down weather. I understand sometimes they are confused by the weather 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      YC, the plants are as confused as I am by the weather but I guess we will all adjust to the strangeness. And I agree, my daughter’s poem does have a fairy tale atmosphere, and we can enjoy that even if we don’t understand the finer details.

      Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you Joanne. I decided to do just that but, unfortunately, they don’t do well in a vase. However, the scent is beautiful, even if they don’t look their best indoors.

      Reply
  21. Steve Schwartzman

    I’ve been surprised to hear you mention spring recently, because Christchurch is close to half-way down your South Island, and I imagined that a latitude that far south would keep you in winter for a longer time. The counterpart to the beginning of August in New Zealand is the beginning of February In the United States, and that’s a time when people in the northern United States endure the coldest part of winter. In Texas, on the other hand, we often get warm days in February because we’re closer to the Equator than most other parts of the country.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      I am surprised as you are about this spring of ours. The trees at the end of our street always bloom during the first week of August. They are on track, but everything else seems far too early, especially as the coldest part of the year is yet to come; or should be yet to come.

      Reply
  22. vsperry

    Somehow I think I missed that post in May…I am so glad that your daughter is coming back to the world, especially through her poetry.
    It seems like the weather mirrors the turbulence of life these days…or is it vice versa?

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      My daughter seems to be dipping a toe in the water of the world; hopefully she finds it to her liking. 🙂 The weather….it certainly affects us as much as we affect it. Perhaps we need to listen to each other more closely. By the way…any more monarchs in your garden?

      Reply
      1. vsperry

        nope, no monarchs. I saw a swallowtail caterpillar the other day, but no butterfly yet. Bad year. But the bees and other pollinators are thriving!

        Reply

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