Ice

2-14-2017

Walking down the hill to my car after work, along the catwalk next to the conveyor lift, sun shining brightly from a clear blue sky, glaring blindingly off the white snow. Glance over toward the wooden handrail along the catwalk, several inches of snow piled on top. I notice there is a layer of ice under the snow dripping down the edge, glistening in the sunlight. Stop to take a closer look, it’s a rippled curtain of ice all along the edge of the handrail, as if the melting snow was trying to form icicles, but instead of independent stalactites of ice, it is an undulating sheath, a bumpy, rumpled conglomerate of hundreds of icicles formed side by side so as to make a continuous ice wall 4 inches tall under the hand rail. I reach out and touch it, slick, cold, wet, and sinuous. Amazing what curious configurations water can dream up!

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