Saturday, February 27, 2010
“The fiddle moaned a deep, rushing undertone and wild notes flickered high above it, rising until they thinned away in nothingness, only to come wailing back, the same notes but not quite the same, as if they had been changed while out of hearing.” (pp. 119-120) The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder
I love the imagery from this sentence. A fierce blizzard has arrived, and Pa knows the magnitude of their situation as they brace themselves for the rest of a long winter. The description of Pa’s fiddle playing conveys the mood of the setting – the deep, rushing winds and wild snow bursts that bring uneasiness to the family.
We’ve had a snowier than usual winter here in Simpsonville, Kentucky. A fellow school librarian today mentioned that his school has missed 30 days already this year due to inclement weather. Even with the cold, snow, and ice we’ve experienced this winter, it pales in comparison to what the Ingalls family and their fellow settlers experienced out on the prairie. How did they manage in such dire situations? As I read this book for the first time, I am reminded of how grateful I am to have a strong, warm house, hot and cold running water, and all the other wonderful amenities of modern life.