One of my favorite lines from Game of Thrones is “winter is coming, hard times.” The tragic deaths that occur on a daily basis, betrayals, loss of home and hearth, loss of body parts does not constitute “hard times” such as the nine year winter that is looming. I love winter. I love the pure white snow, the brisk air, the challenge of dealing with a radical season. I loved winter as a child and remember playing outdoors for hours at a time, making snow forts, ice skating and sledding down home-made hills. Outer clothing was quite inadequate in those days, so we were always wet and cold. I loved winter, but dealt with respiratory viruses for most of the season. This winter has been brutal with it’s sub-zero temps, roller coaster rises that caused icy conditions and grey skies. Today the sky is blue with high clouds. The snow cover is just right. There are deer tracks everywhere and if you are lucky, a deer will run by.
I also want to note the passing of Pete Seeger. He died yesterday at the age of ninety-four. The news evoked memories of his songs including We shall overcome, Where have all the flowers gone, If’ I had a hammer, Turn turn turn. I sang a lot of his songs during the high years of folk music. Which leads me to the glaring omission of folk singers at the Grammy Awards on Sunday. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the duets especially Beyonce and JZ, Carole King and Sara Bareillis, Pharrell Williams Daft Punk and Stevie Wonder and Macklemore, Ryan Lewis, Madonna, Mary Lambert. All beautiful and talented artists. But where are the folk singers. Dar Williams, John McCutcheon, Joan Baez, Judy Collins are still singing