Category Archives: Snow

The sub-nivean zone

Hi all! Happy New Year! I wish everyone joy, peace, and health in the upcoming year.

 

And now, to start things off with a bang, check out my most recent Earth Matters column in the Hampshire Gazette (Jan 2, 2016). It’s about life under the snow:

 

http://www.gazettenet.com/news/townbytown/amherst/20162762-95/earth-matters-the-sub-nivean-zone-life-under-the-snow

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Snow, snow, and more snow

"Novo mesto Breg 2". Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons
“Novo mesto Breg 2”. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

I am perhaps growing a little weary of the subject of snow, yet that is what there is this winter, in vast and ever increasing abundance. Snow, snow, and more snow. Lacking snow shoes, I wade through thigh-deep powder to the bird feeder, trying to keep up with the demands of little goldfinches, chickadees, and nuthatches. I sprinkle sunflower seeds under the feeder for the ground-feeding birds, knowing that, in fairly short order, those seeds will be covered up by yet more snow. I wonder how many of them get eaten, either from above by birds and squirrels, or from below by small rodents tunneling up from the sub-nivean world. Come spring, will I find a giant pile of soggy, uneaten seeds attempting to sprout? Several more months will pass before I’ll have an answer to that question.

In the meantime, some youthful part of me still gets excited by snow days. “What?? Snow day?? Everything’s closed!! No school!!” It’s been a while since I’ve been in school, but the excitement persists. In light of that feeling, here is fun poem by Billy Collins, entitled “Snow Day”.  Enjoy!

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/176051