I don’t know if the snow globe still exists or not, nor do I know whether what I remember is a memory of a real time and place or a conflation, a confabulation of remembrance and imagination.
I think it was a gift to me in what—third or fourth grade?—perhaps from a teacher. A cheap trinket from the five-and-dime, but the memory has such greater gravity and significance associated with it than had it come from one of those meaningless children who are so long forgotten to me.
However, what I can say with great surety is when I think of the snow globe, what I am remembering is looking out the window of that ancient red stone school into a cold dark sky that is both woolen grey and deep cobalt blue. It is me, looking out at a snowing and snow-covered place, from within that plastic world.
Now I find myself seeking the snow sky, driving in vain towards it, sniffing it out, searching in a most animal way, traversing hill after hill until I lose track of how far I have come, wondering if it is possible to ever find that twilight blue world out there again. I seek but cannot find—there are ten-thousand intervening steps that distract and deflect, and only serve to misdirect me from that elusive place. I know it is there, but cannot seem to find it.
At next daybreak the snow finds me. And at twilight, for a fleeting instant, I catch a glimpse of that cobalt blue snow globe world behind me, the heavy sky drawing its muffling dome close down over the pines.