December 15, 1856

 in Thoreau’s Journal:

I still recall that characteristic winter evening of December 9th: The cold, dry, and wholesome diet my mind and senses necessarily fed on,



—oak leaves, bleached and withered weeds that rose above the snow, the now dark green of pines, and perchance the faint metallic chip of a single tree sparrow; the hushed stillness of the wood at sundown, aye, all the winter day, the short boreal twilight, the smooth serenity and the reflections of the pond, still free from ice; the melodious hooting of the owl….