January skies are full of stars over East Chop Light. Timothy Johnson

Sunday, January 21, 2018

No doubt the winds will blow and the snow will fly many times again before winter takes final leave of the Vineyard. For now, however, it is enough to enjoy a few warmish days in January, days that often end in breathtaking sunsets.

January thaws have been around for a long time. Thoreau wrote about them in his Walden wanderings and personal journals nearly a century and a half ago. He noted, for example, the mild winter in January 1858: "How completely a load of hay in the winter revives the memory of past summers. Summer in us is only a little dried like it . . . . If you are sick and despairing, go forth in winter and see the red alder catkins dangling at the extremities of the twigs, all in the wintry air, like long, hard mulberries, promising a new spring and the fulfillment of all our hopes.

"We prize any tenderness, any softening in the winter . . . . But I do not quite like this warm weather and bare ground at this season. What is winter without snow and ice in this latitude? The bare earth is unsightly. This winter is but unburied summer."

Comments (1)

Penny Thomas, Gobles, MI
Is the East Chop light in trouble? Erosion?
January 21, 2018 - 11:50pm

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