The U. P. Witches of Winter

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by Sharon M. Kennedy

Witch of winter

Folklore is filled with stories of winter witches. Today, January 6, marks the Christian Epiphany, the day when Italians believed La Befana—their “famous” winter witch—visited children. Apparently, she bestowed gifts on the good and coal to the naughty. She was like Santa in that respect. I didn’t bother to conduct extensive research, but I’m sure a quick Google search would unearth any number of famous or infamous Snow Queens and witches who appear only during the icy cold months. I don’t know where they live in warm weather. I’ll leave that up to the imaginations of readers.

Whatever is swirling in the photo I took years ago is unknown to me, but I’d like to think it was a benevolent U.P. winter witch. The house I lived in at the time was built by my mother’s brother, John, who was deceased. His brother, my Uncle Steve, is blowing out my driveway. However, the swirl has nothing to do with snowblowing. The trees testify there was no wind. The sky tells me the clouds deposited no snow. So the only logical conclusion to the swirl was the presence of a benevolent winter witch.

What say you?

Uncle Steve snowblowing

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