There was crisp, dry snow under his feet and more snow lying on the branches of the trees. Overhead there was a pale blue sky, the sort of sky one sees on a fine winter day in the morning. Straight ahead of him he saw between the tree trunks the sun, just rising, very red and clear. Everything was perfectly still, as if he were the only living creature in that country.
-C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Snow swirled down in the gray dawn yesterday, winter whispering farewell in its dying breath: I’m still here, but not for long. Just one more time . . . .
There’s a silence, a stillness, to Sunday mornings anyway, a sense of expectancy, an invitation to step away from the world.
Of course I think of Narnia. I always do when it snows.
I was ten years old, scouring the school library shelves for a book I hadn’t read yet, when I encountered a compelling title: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.
“Sounds interesting,” I thought, opening the cover, not realizing that it was a portal to another world that I’d never fully leave – or want to leave. I fell in and never climbed all the way out again. Part of that pull is the longing C.S. Lewis infused into the Narnia Chronicles, the sense of “realness” that pervades the magic. Lewis poured what he loved into the stories, and they live because of it.
Having facilitated a writing workshop for teachers just the day before on “creating the magic” – writing about what matters to you, tapping into your heart, your dreams, your struggles, your memories, making your writing authentic so you can help students do the the same – I watched the snow, remembering Narnia.
Writing is the closest thing to magic that there is. As teachers we create the atmosphere for our writers. It’s one of excited expectancy, of energy, when young writers discover the power within them, learning how to harness words to impact readers. Writing, after all, is meant to be shared – it’s the connecting of human minds and hearts.
Which is why, for me, Narnia is never very far away.
Especially when it snows.