February days in my town are cruel and unrelenting. In February I can never remember what day it is. Monday? Tuesday? Does it matter? If you were to draw February, you would need only charcoal: lightest gray, lighter gray, light gray, gray, dark gray, darker gray, darkest gray. Read Kafka's descriptions of the landscape, and you'll nod in discouraged recognition.
February won't even submit to proper spelling.
These are days when my eyes yearn for just one spot of color. The sky and ground do not oblige. The line between them is imperceptible, as resistant to geometry as the muddy, old snow underfoot.
No need to wash the car, because dirt and snow and dirty snow will fleck its exterior within hours.
Who wouldn't be depressed in and by this climate? I'd like to meet that person. I've yet to meet that person.
The children in my classroom are fretful. It's been too cold to have outdoor recess. They argue listlessly with one another. Any gains they've made since September are, for now, reversed. They tip chairs, spill crayons, trip over their own feet.
My cat whines at all the windows. One morning he manages to escape to the garage. In a minute he has skulked back into the house, cowed by the cold. In defeat he falls ungainly onto the floor and whimpers. I know just how he feels. Nothing to do for it but wait until March, I whisper to his slumped form. (I whisper so that no one who might worry has to hear my crazy.)
If only I could discern one day from the next, I'd come so much closer to accepting the terms of February's confinement.