A Wintry Painting


(Original oil painting by my father, Harry H. Watson)

Announced by all the trumpets of the sky,
Arrives the snow, and, driving o’er the fields,
Seems nowhere to alight: the whited air
Hides hills and woods, the river, and the heaven,
And veils the farmhouse at the garden’s end.
The sled and traveller stopped, the courier’s feet
Delayed, all friends shut out, the housemates sit
Around the radiant fireplace, enclosed
In a tumultuous privacy of storm.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, “The Snow-Storm

My Dad created this painting in 1969 and it has always been one of my favorites.  Possibly because I love the snow, or perhaps because of the cozy nature of the picture, I’ve always thought it would be wonderful to sit inside this little house and feel the same warmth that spills out onto the snow through frosty windows while the twilight sky is dark and brooding.  I photographed the painting today to make a Christmas card for my parents and thought I’d share it with you.  The poem seemed like a good companion.   It is snowing here in Nova Scotia as I write this — gigantic, wet clumps of flakes that have already made the pine trees groan in protest.  Great snowball snow…if one were so inclined!


Author: nancybond

A writer, photographer, naturalist from small town Nova Scotia, Canada.

18 thoughts on “A Wintry Painting”

  1. My goodness, your dad is talented and it will make a perfect Christmas card. The glow from the windows on to the snow is the heart of the card.

    I can just imagine your big fat flakes. We still don’t have snow…but maybe, just maybe on Thursday. I’ll let you know.

  2. Nancy… I’ve always imagined you’d get tons of snow there in NS every winter… true?


    Most years, we get our fair share, Don. We have had years with very little snow, but this winter is certainly not following that pattern — I’ll post some photos of our overnight storm later today. :)

  3. we’ve had flurries twice but nothing that stuck to the ground but the winter has come in like a lion. i love your dad’s painting and can see why it would be a favourite of yours. i think using it for a christmas card is fantastic, i’m sure your parents will get a real kick out of it. enjoy your snow.

  4. Nancy … that is one perfect painting for a snowy late afternoon in NS ! Your dad got it just right : )
    Did you ever jump out of the windows on the second floor unto a snow bank because we had so much snow as kids ? .. even (heaven forbid now) the roof ? LOL
    There had been some winters in Cape Breton and Mill Cove that we actually did do that .. aren’t we bad ? LOL

  5. Hi Nancy, I could have sworn I’d commented on this post…but apparently not. I have seen it before tho’…it is definitely a picture to hang on to. I like the idea of making it into a Christmas card. Very clever:) Your dad has real talent. Jan/ThanksFor2Day

  6. Your father’s painting and the poem are both beautiful, Nancy.

    My children LOVE being snowed in. There’s nothing like that for coziness. Here in the Pacific Northwest, with our temperate climate, that’s a rare occurrence, however.

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