Autumn turns every color into lingering memories of spring, until winter undresses every single leaf and all that is left is the absence. The density of emptiness fills the freezing air with haunting silence, ringing like a distant bell through lonely country roads and abandoned hidden refuges. Normally a springboard of life, the river path is now dormant, nesting frozen undercurrents of murky waters and lonely fog into a bed of unseen fragility. The pungent air bleeds into the wounded skin and chapped lips, once humidly pregnant with nectars of summer moons and stars. Even the sunlight weakened to its knees, subsides to the dusk presages of darkness with subdued resignation and broken faltering pride. Phantoms and birds from seasons’ past dawdle into dreaming migrations through the vault of the universe, leaving behind the hidden massacre of ancient flowers and trees - all encompassing God’s creations condemned to a slow and irrevocable sacrifice. Yet, I remember walking thorough winter valleys and morning woods, hand in hand with my loving father. The poetic desolation of the winter season wasn’t lost on my early soul and molding spirit. The musky smell of absence ripened my imagination with unspoken hope, filled with the reassuring warmth of my father’s gentle and guiding hand. Love seemed to be the antidote to all nature’s mournings, the lighthouse to all grey ancestries of death and season’s discontent underneath my timid childlike steps. Today, I wistfully smile my own father’s smile as I hold dear to his daily embrace from the heaven above - my weary footsteps walk through new winter paths and frozen rivers, carved by my own unfiltered will and destiny. Spring memories do not falter nor ever fade as they guide my footsteps with soaring melancholy; reflections and remembrances comfort my journey into the unaltered seasons of eternal love, as my heart covers all life’s deserts with the encompassing wishful beauty of falling winter snow.
poem & photography by Marco Pignataro