Snow

She disgusts me with the same unsettling ferocity of a mother watching her favorite child commit senseless violence with a smile on his face. The same churning that results from meeting a childhood bully once again, under more mature pretenses, but with the continued aching of scars that never healed. Like the disgust one feels when they feel themselves gradually become the villain and finding that they enjoy it.

She is very clingy. Yes, her children fall from the sky with wistful bewilderment, but once they penetrate our atmosphere, they become like glue, ruthlessly latching onto each innocent surface in its path. Their frigid tentacles caress unsuspecting tree branches, stoic architecture, innocent remnants of a warmer time, and they attack the pleasures of comfort. Her children are uncontrolled, relentless, unchecked. She is a great beast hidden behind a beautiful blanketed facade.

She glistens back at the beholder with a traitorous glint, like a charming abuser taunting his victim with his charismatic smile, reserved for guilty bystanders. Her presence entices enchantment, beckons one towards her. All it takes to experience what she has to offer is one brief moment of contact. One touch and you may devour on what she has been restraining herself from giving unto you; is it clarity? Is it sweetness? Is it relief? These empty promises are what tempts you to place your bare human hand into her grasp, urging you ever more into her, clueless as to her true motives. There is no hidden meaning, but you sure do think there is once you've been embraced by her.

Her starkness, so severe against the Mother's beautiful backdrop of green and brown, is uncannily unnatural. Nothing compares to her clear white crystals. Not a barren skeleton, stripped of its animal host. Not a pearl nestled deep within a clam eons beneath the surface of the sea. Not even the most beautiful of pale flowers can compare to Snow's assumed natural purity. Her only companion in comparison belongs to the sky from which she originated, her sister, the cloud. Yet, even the cloud betrays her most evil temperament with tempestuous pitch and forlorn grays. The cloud, from which Snow was born, knows of her danger and casts her from the sky, dooming Earth in small doses. If she is a rarity, surely the Mother will convince them to learn from her last bombastic entrance. Yet, her haunting persuasion clouds all judgement, and thus the cycle continues.

For all her faults, Snow is honest, if not visually deceptive. Humans are easily fooled, distracted by her minute diamonds falling from the sky, oblivious to her premeditated exuberant pilings, and humans are irrevocably at fault for their own naivety in the face of beautiful danger.

With Snow comes her accomplices, Ice and Frigidity, and, with Ice's stealth and Frigidity's persistence, together they create despair so widespread yet quiet that by their next fantastic debut, all the previous lessons learned have been lost. These wintry Gorgons attack either swiftly, with the force of all the anger pent up from seasons of neglect, or slowly, with the delicacy of a newborn doe taking its first steps, marking the beginning of the loneliest season.

The hearth burning brightly cannot protect from the incessant beckoning of her majesty. Everywhere one looks, she has your attention, she has caught your eye, she thrives from the spotlight. Not even the beams from the sun above can halt her progress towards destruction. Brief reprieve from her clutches swaddles humans into a false sense of security, allowing them time to write poetry about her beauty, catalog her most beautiful depictions, and muse about her eventual return.

It is no mistake that humans have crowned Snow as the queen of winter. She is stern with her subjects yet soft in her features, bold in her strengths but restrained against her adversaries. Despite my disdain for her, she is beautiful. She entices me to don my heaviest coats, lace up my thickest boats, and rub my fingers together chasing warmth in preparation for when I will caress her powdery skin, lose myself in her childlike enthusiasm, and nearly lose myself to the air filling stiffening my lungs with cold and summoning a rosy complexion upon my cheeks. I bid her adieu with bittersweet tinge in my expression. Yet, despite my enjoyment beside her, inevitably, I must face the danger of remaining encased in her arms. I remind myself that while she may not be here in the morning, I can rely on the fact that she will greet me with the same pureness of expression and deceptiveness of motive that I have come to bask in. Maybe one day she and her goons will permanently overtake me, but, in the moment as I sneak one last glance toward her before turning away, her beauty washes away my fear, exactly as she designed it to be.