Kindly Erasures


Cross country skiing through the woods of Vermont, I glide smoothly on the groomed trail, my breath moving in and out as my legs kick and my arms pull me rhythmically over the snow. The exhilaration of exercise and the stillness of the winter forest combine to give me a sense of deep wellbeing. For now I can let go of my worries—the usual day-to-day chatter that fills my mind as well as the deeper anxiety for the welfare of our country. Snow has a way of covering and cleaning, transforming every surface into softer contours, what E.B. White, in his essay “Homecoming,” called, “…the kindly erasures of the snow.” At this moment, surrounded by bare trees, silky snow, and silence, I appreciate the kindness.