The water is restless in this part of the river. It pushes on all winter.
The ice tries to stretch over the surface like a cold blanket, but it cannot. The water persuades it to break apart, to keep moving.
The ice talks to the river with deep groans and quiet thuds. It rocks gently, waiting. An indolent heartbeat.
The river finds a crack, heaves a deep breath, and replies.
© Karen McRae, 2013
72 thoughts on “A Deep Breath of Winter”
Karen – as always, I love your photographs. Your writing on this post is absolutely lyrical, too!
Thank you, Melinda! : )
So cold!!! But so beautiful!!
It’s VERY cold. But still, the river calls…
Another album of beautiful shots, Karen. Love your work!!
Hi Fred, kind thanks to you!
So so cold..but oh so breathtaking – I love how so often with your shots I feel like I am flying high above looking down on a larger landscape – its a great play with scale..
It was cold enough to take your breath… but still lovely to be out there. Thanks, Cath!
Loving those blue hues!
Thanks, Trish. Those cold blues have their own look.
What an awesome range of blues!
I love those blues… thank you.
I love the sounds the frozen water makes, calling out to to the sun as it passes overhead. We have lake Chambon near us in France, and in the deep winters its frozen water creaks and groans throughout the day, then settles back in the night to simple cracks. I walked on frozen sea in the Falklands, where you can hear the waves lapping underneath and feel the rolling. Love it and your lovely picures bring back the memories.
That sounds like a lovely experience, Jim. There really is something to those whispering ice sounds that is mesmerizing.
So many varied layers of interest! Magnificent.
I was thinking that as I was photographing, I’m glad that comes through in the images. Thank you, Elena.
I listen to the river.
As do I, there may be nothing more soothing.
You have your eye attuned to everything – where others stay inside, you go out and find what you are looking for. I used to live near the Damariscotta River in Maine. Once, when it was cold like you are experiencing, we traveled up river to see the ice breaker ship come down, thudding like a giant’s steps all the way. The ice buckled but not without great groans of protest.
Judy, I do love to observe all the subtle changes.
I can imagine the “great groans of protest” as you describe them. That would be interesting.
Lovely, Karen! 🙂
Thank you, Steve!
Wow, you got the same temperatures as us. I recognize the Karen landscape. My favorite is the last, which looks as berries, but I guess they are some very cold flowers, sleeping.
Yes, it has been cold but we are heading to much warmer temperatures! I’ve been trying to figure out what that last plant is – I have to do more research!
Absolutely superb images, sublime – and a perfect marriage of text and photographs. You were moved by the experience and you have conveyed that to us.
Louis, thank you. It was one of those moments when nature is sublimely beautiful in many ways.
Hi Karen, your pictures are lovely and your description is so transporting, I can just imagine nature’s dialogues in this cold!!
Thanks for your comment, Sophy!
I just love these Karen. Number 1 and five particularly. I love the layers created by the ice, the mist, the trees behind the mist and the sky. Fabulous!
Thanks very much, Adrian. It was a rare visual opportunity, I’m grateful for your comment.
You’ve been showing absolute calmness of the nature till now.
Then, when you show the dynamism of it, you shows deep deep
dark power, almost demonic one.
In one glance on the top photo, I thought it was a kind of Tsunami
coming from the right.
I love the subtle nuance of gray-blue beautifully captured.
That’s an interesting take on these images. I suppose the biting cold stirs things up a bit. Thanks for your comment, Yoshizen.
Especially coldblue9 and 11 ‘caught’ me; and some of your words. Thank you.
Thank you, Sean, I’m happy to hear that.
The cracking ice, like the bluish slough of a mythic creature.
Great description, it sort of moves like a vast organism.
Like a wrestling match in slow motion. Amazing captures from a place i have come to be very fond of, Karen…
That’s nice to hear that you are fond of this river too, Alessandro. : )
You’ve been looking and listening with your heart…such beauty, Karen….
Thank you, Scott.
Beautiful work, Karen. The river, water and ice – living, breathing and fascinating subjects that really come to life in this series.
Thanks, Simon. It is a place that offers so much.
Beautiful frozen environment! Your photos are amazing! I was once at the sea where the waves had frozen solid overnight and just then, forgot my camera and was never again able to capture that moment, thanks for sharing this piece of nature’s splendor
Thank you for your kind comment. There are many times when I wished I had my camera with me, too – I know what that’s like. sometimes these type of moments are very fleeting.
Your words are beautiful! Graceful writing bringing me to this place. I love the blues here. And the third photo fills me with freeing cold delight! 🙂
Cold delight – that’s a good way to put it, Gigi! Thanks so much.
Breathtakingly beautiful as are the words you wrote! I’m regretting the post I just wrote about summer dreaming! This looks lovely.
Thank you, Mona. There is always room for dreaming of summer! : )
…..and time stands still (well for a short while anyway!)
So cold, so stunning and so peaceful. Beautiful scenery and fantastic captures!
Thank you, Madoqua. : )
What an absolutely stunning selection, Karen – I really like the sense of scale in both the shots and your words. I absolutely love the shot of semi-submerged tree branches/ roots – there’s something simultaneously pre-historic and of the moment about it.
Hi Richard, thank you very much!
As always your images show a quiet beauty.
Pretty..and pretty cold! Beautiful photographs Karen!
It was pretty cold – it’s warming up now, though. The landscape is ever-changing around here.
I lived most of my life in the northeast, although way south of you, certainly not as cold. Your photographs remind me of that ever-changing landscape.
Karen, I missed your photos so much, and these are marvelous! Cold, very cold there. Take care. 🙂
Hi Nandini! Thank you, we are warming up now… : )
Love your eye and camera expertise… and especially, to me, coldblue 9 and 11 are 5 star photographs that would show beautifully on anyone’s living room wall. It is almost miraculous what a photograph can portray and convey.
Thank you, Joseph. Your comments are very kind.
Love the shadows in some of these!
And, as others have said, your writing in this post is lovely.
Thank you, Howard! That’s very kind.
Thank you, Anita.
Oh wow. I’ve run out of superlatives. Great series, Karen. Again.
Karen – I am sure you have been asked this so many times that you are fed up with it but how cold does it get where you live? I love all of the images but I particularly like the second and second last shots!
I came again and struck by the power of the image !
Thank you, Yoshizen. Extreme weather can be very photogenic!