march 5/RUN

2.25 miles
river road, south/north
33 degrees

Raining today. Mostly a soft rain. I’m hoping it melts a lot of the snow. Just above freezing. Everything gray, gloomy, dark. Went out for a short afternoon run by the gorge. I don’t remember hearing birds or kids or music. Today would have been my mom’s 80th birthday, if she had lived past 67. So many years without her. Strange. I didn’t think about her or feel overwhelmed with grief as I ran. I guess I’m learning to live with it.

Earlier, as we drove on the river road, I had noticed how some of the trees never lost their leaves. A streak of brownish-gold, which became a smudge of off-gold later when I ran by. Encountered some runners, walkers, a biker with a bright light.

With all of my layers, I couldn’t feel the rain, but when I got home, my black vest was almost soaked.

A few weeks ago, I found a great essay about Longfellow and his reporting on the weather in his journals: ‘Day to be recorded with sunbeams! Day of light and love!’: Longfellow and the Weather:

Though some of his entries were brief or contained on a quick record of the day’s temperature, it was Longfellow’s more lyrical descriptions that set his reports apart from those of the typical diarist, offering a glimpse into the mind and process of a poet at work, consciously or not. Instead of a windless or light rain, for example, he writes on December 1, 1865: “A gentle rain and mist covering the whole landscape. The river changed to a lake. Not a breath of wind. The brown leafless branches all at rest. A day of quiet and seclusion.” The “gentle” rain imbues a sense of calm over the river (now a “lake”), the wind, and the “brown leafless branches,” which are not dead but “at rest,” suggesting a restorative benefit to the fallowness of the landscape. This restorative quell extends to Longfellow as well, who breaks from the demands of work and celebrity for “quiet and seclusion.”

I like thinking about weather — inner and outer weather — and how to include it in my log entries. I also found this master’s thesis on Emily Dickinson and 19th century meteorology. Very cool.