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Poor Will's Almanack: December 28, 2010 – January 3, 2011

Flickr Creative Commons user withrow
Goldenrod in winter

Poor Will’s Almanack for the Transition Week to Deep Winter, the fifth week of the natural year. Not long ago I was looking back over my daybook and read what I had written for December 19.

On that day in 1988, I wrote the following: "I was walking in the park. A hard southwest wind was moaning and warm. Geese were flying back and forth. Broken stratus clouds were tousled, white and gray, low and fast. Sparrows were swarming in the aster seeds; then I almost stumbled over two people, naked, making love in the dead goldenrod. I saw clothes, coats, thrown across the field, knees akimbo. The couple paid me no attention, and I turned quickly away, walked on, somehow renewed, more optimistic than I'd been before."

And here is what I wrote on December 19 of 2008: "Looking back over the daybook journal, I wonder what happened to the couple I discovered in the field on this day twenty years ago. Do they remember the day like I do? Did they get married, have children? Are they happy? Has their ritual been as durable as mine? December voyeur, I want everything that I observe to be connected to something else, to hold some kind of significance. I want to know how things will turn out, what will happen. But maybe it's easier than that; meaning is simple: what you see is what you get.

Next week on Poor Will's Almanack: notes for the Second Week of Deep Winter. In the meantime, let me know if you were the ones and if you're happy.

Poor Will's Almanack for 2011 ---- a full year of Bill Felker's ruminations, along with astronomical information, notes on gardening, farming and the progress of the year --- is now available. More information can be found at poorwillsalmanack.com

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Bill Felker has been writing nature columns and almanacs for regional and national publications since 1984. His Poor Will’s Almanack has appeared as an annual publication since 2003. His organization of weather patterns and phenology (what happens when in nature) offers a unique structure for understanding the repeating rhythms of the year.