Catching Snowflakes

By Colleen Warren

February 2, 2015

Catching Snowflakes

I remember childhood school days, just learning about the singularity of snowflakes, no two alike, the teacher said. At home, my sisters and I duplicated her classroom experiment, substituting white paper rubbed thick and waxy with black crayon for the black construction paper she had used. I stood in the snow with my arms stretched out before me, holding that crayoned paper out like a plate to catch sugared delicacies as they drifted down. Each one lay defined and perfect, crystalline and fragile on my sheet. I could see every triangulation, every prism, every impossibly sharp, geometric edge, until slowly, before my eyes, the edges crumbled and dissolved and the flakes collapsed upon themselves into tiny puddles, droplets that rolled off the slick surface.

Why do I not stand--often--with my face uplifted to snow, my mittened hands gripping a waxy sheet of paper? What keeps me from flopping down to make snow angels, or what checks me from whizzing down hills on lunch trays? I should build a massive snowman that would remain at our front door long after the rest of the snow has melted. I should leave signs. This snowman, that flattened streak of snow down the hill, that angel imprint could be Ebenezers, reminders of God's grace in my life, witnesses of my efforts to preserve wonder and seek ordinary miracles.

Let it snow. And let me be there.

Photo "Snowflake" provided by Andrew Magill, via Flickr creative commons license.

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