On nature's eve, Winter arrives with a performance that can only be hers. The characters who once stood in the spotlight have all removed their lively, colorful costumes and have stepped aside. Many in the audience think this is the intermission, the time to rest and refocus. Nature's stage is empty, or so it appears. For the acts of Spring, Summer and Autumn the weather stayed in the background and allowed life to grow under its mantle and tell its story. But in this act the weather takes center stage; and not just in quick flourishes or crescendos, but throughout the season. It shows who is the mastermind behind this entire play of life. There's no room left for any other part. The drama is in the solitude of the weather's role, like the soliloquy of a character whose part had been downplayed until now. Thus we speak of it every day, saying how bitter cold it is, facing the challenges of ice and frost morning after morning. Birds have no reason to sing. The trees have nothing to wear. They are all bewildered by the cold, long breath of Winter. Then, occasionally we take in the immaculate marvel of a snow-covered morning. Through its bare simplicity, Winter accents our lives.