The snow really DID fall thick, very thick and very fast. He didn't care, in fact he welcomed it. Despite his pain, still the scene was very beautiful. Everything covered in a white, virginal blanket. A fresh start. Clichés filled his head and he took some comfort from their familiarity. He was in a new situation, a new life and he needed something to cling to, some kind of security which only the solid, unchangeable elements of his everyday life could give him.
He was becoming inured to the emotional pain, but still he let it through sometimes and blinded by tears allowed himself to connect with his suffering rather than dam it up. It was a pressure release which prevented him from wallowing in the luxury of a complete breakdown.
What he had realised over the past few months was that any pain could be got through. That somehow his capacity for being hurt and for suffering grew to encompass his burdens. He had only learned this for real during that difficult time. That he could crawl on the floor sobbing his very heart out, that he could be blinded by tears and lie on his bed, mind filled with longing and begging. Sleep rarely came. He could get through pain and he felt the same person, but how on earth could he be? His life was changed other than for a few constants.
He stood at the top of the snow covered slope, hearing cries and laughter and muffled noise. Some children were tentatively edging themselves forward, some were sliding fast, screaming in delight and fear, whilst others were in crumpled, hysterical heaps at the bottom, sledges upside down. His wife's home was a short walk away, his daughter in a friend's house in sight of where he stood and most likely his wife's new lover sitting in her home.
He felt like a ghost, like Marley, cast away from life in death, full of regret, reaching out, unable to touch. He knew Marley's pain, his grief and his own chain weighed heavily. Part of the world, yet not part of it.
He looked across the snow toward the place where his family were and where he no longer was since the separation He knew he no longer belonged there. As he turned and walked off through the thick snow which was bereft of life and broken only by bare trees with a white covering upon their branches, he felt that the new year held a promise which was empty of the life that he had known. It was a bleak thought. He allowed himself to cry as the thick snowflakes fell from the sky all around him.