Notes on the Micros

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December 22, 2022 by The Citron Review

After forty-some (increasing emphasis on some) odd years on this planet, in this body, I have realized that I’m not actually “Winter” born. My birthday falls several days, more than a week in fact, before the official start of Winter according to the calendar. And so, I’ll take off these boots and try on new shoes.

This late Autumnal human was born in Upstate/Central/Lake Effect New York and I’ve recently moved back to enjoy the 89 months of Winter. And be closer to family.

The identity of place and time, our setting, shapes who we are whether we accept it or not. What exactly does this do to our own identity, to the stories we tell? Minutiae might not be much on its own, but it’s something we often find at the heart of personal story. I can’t dismiss the mini-epiphany. The small aha within a much larger uuhhhh. Maybe it’s a whimper of internal tension that radiates out and through our character. Though we might just ignore the aha.

As we’re about to publish, those of us in the northeastern United States are waiting on a potential bomb cyclone pre-touted as a “once-in-a-generation event” and I don’t want to be associated with that. After all, I’m autumnal! This isn’t my storm. Don’t blame me. Get your seasonal affective light boxes out and shine on. I’m firing up my electric snowblower and I don’t have time to argue whether it’s actually a snow thrower, I just know that I’ve accepted the weather and I don’t want the blame. And isn’t this the only way to deal with Climate Change as we watch those polar bears fall from melting ice floes like Jack in Titanic?

I’m forever impressed at the deft maneuvers of our micro writers in the tiny spaces we’ve allowed for their ahas, their uuhhhhs, the way we hear a song coloring everything in its radius, the way the mundane leads us to scream, the way science is a way of seeing and hiding, the way an animal is never just an animal, the way we repeat ourselves to ourselves over and over, the way just being yourself is dangerous, the way our truths are complicated and slippery, the way our place in a community is fraught with what we accept and what we shouldn’t have to.  

Our Winter micros are full of those simple details becoming the pebbles that ripple, that wave, that gush, that freeze, that fly, that blizzard. I’ve got enough shovels to go around. We’re going to be digging out. Can’t ignore this one. I am not born of Winter. But I live here now. Snowshoes are hanging on a hook by a drafty door.


JR Walsh
Online Editor
The Citron Review



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