It's dark outside as I begin to write this. The wind is howling, blowing in a storm while the family, still tucked in their beds, lies dreaming of the new day. The sounds of a house not yet awake.... I wonder how anyone can sleep through them, punctuated as they are in the stillness with the roaring of the wind. I'm waiting for daybreak to start the coffee. It will take longer to get here this morning, with no pink telltale glow along the eastern mountains to announce its arrival. Slowly, the world comes into focus; first the snow covered deck rail, then the dark silhouette of a lonely conifer against a ridgeline of barren limbs, until finally, a variegated gray quilt lies across the winter landscape. The fold of overcast skies still blankets my mountains from view. The sky is light enough now for morning to officially begin, but for a moment I linger at the keyboard, pretending that the rosy reflection of the walls in the window is actually a sunrise. And then I hear it. Not the wind thundering through the trees, but a child on the stairs. A new day dawneth.