February 2, 1966
Jocie Brooke here reporting from very snowy Hollyhill, Kentucky. Do you like snow? I do. So much that I decided to write a poem about it. A Haiku. Do you know what that is? I sort of do. We’ve been talking about them in English at school. It’s a short three line poem. Not sure exactly how short the lines are supposed to be, but you try to paint a picture with words. So here goes.
Blankets the fields
Sparkles with freedom for kids.
I’m not sure if that’s a real Haiku or not. I’m not much of a poet, but at least it has three lines and it’s about snow. I got that much right.
We had about ten inches yesterday. That means we’ll probably be out of school the rest of the week. Yay! Aunt Love says I should want to go now and not this summer, but every kid wants snow days. Teachers act like they do too. They were looking out the window for snow clouds all day yesterday. I’m not too sure Mr. Goins wasn’t doing some kind of weird snow dance when we had PE Monday. If he was, it worked.
I like to walk in the snow, don’t you? We just have the yard at our house and that’s good for making a snowman. I helped Stephen do that and Tabitha and I had a snowball fight. She was a better shot than me. We let Stephen throw snowballs at us, but we made sure we missed him when we threw them at him. He’s just two. We wanted him to have fun in the snow. But after Tabitha took Stephen in to warm up, I took off through the old apple orchard in behind the house and over the fence into the neighbor’s field. Then I made the first tracks across the field. Do you like doing that? Sometimes it can feel like you’re the only person in the world when you look back and see your tracks and nobody else’s. My dog, Zeb was with me. So he was making tracks all over too as he kept sniffing the snow like some little mice might be tunneling around under it. Sometimes he would pounce and stick his nose down in the snow, but he never came up with anything.
Dad says looking back at our tracks in the snow should make us think about leaving happy tracks everywhere we go like that song says. Dad can make a lesson out of anything. Anyway, he says it’s good to leave a happy path behind us and spread sunshine instead of gloom.
Sometimes I wonder if Dad ever preaches any of that to Zella. You remember Zella, don’t you? She works at the paper and if she ever leaves happy tracks, she must take a broom along to sweep them away. She doesn’t like snow either. Here’s a little bit out of that book about Hollyhill Summer of Joy when it started snowing the day after Christmas that year. Here’s what she’s thinking.
SUMMER OF JOY
Zella didn’t like snow. Not even at Christmastime. The only good thing about a white Christmas was the song. Besides, it wasn’t Christmas now. It was the Sunday after. Thank goodness. People got way too carried away by Christmas.
Not that it wasn’t something a Christian should mark, but she’d read somewhere that Bible scholars said Jesus wasn’t even born on Christmas Day. No snow on the stable roof. They claimed somebody just picked that date. Something about there already being some kind of holiday to celebrate the sun starting back closer to the earth. As if the people way back then even knew what the sun was doing. After all, they thought the world was flat as a pancake.
So who knew, and as David said, what difference did it make when they celebrated? The important thing was that Jesus had been born. Some people were always coming up with something to try to mess up a good Christian’s head. A person had to decide what was right. By reading the Bible and praying, of course, but then they just had to stick to it.
One thing for sure, every snowflake outside was sticking to it. To the ground, that is. There had to already be two inches of the white stuff on her front walk. It was plain inconvenient.
Zella sort of got into trouble with her nosiness in that book, but I guess it turned out all right. Another thing Dad likes to talk about – how God can take what we do even when we might not be doing what we should and make something good come out of it. That’s what happened when Zella went to poking around to figure out where Wes was from. She wasn’t ready to believe he fell out of that Jupiter spaceship the way I was. You can check out more about that book here. That’s some kind of futuristic thing, isn’t it? Maybe something from Jupiter.