February 19, 1852

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in Thoreau’s Journal:

Everywhere snow—gathered into sloping drifts about the walls & fences—& beneath the snow the frozen ground—and men are compelled to deposit the summer’s provision in burrows in the earth like the ground-squirrel. Many creatures daunted by the prospect migrated in the fall, but man remains and walks over the frozen snow crust—and over the stiffened rivers & ponds.  & draws now upon his summer stores. Life is reduced to its lowest terms. There is no home for you now—in this freezing wind but in that shelter which you prepared in the summer— You steer straight across the fields to that in season.  I can with difficulty tell when I am over the river. There is a similar crust over my heart. Where I rambled in the summer—& gathered flowers and rested on the grass by the brookside in the shade—now no grass nor flowers—nor brook nor shade—but cold unvaried snow stretching mile after mile and no place to sit.