20 Women on the Beauty of Winter

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Winter is a time of beautiful contradictions and rich sensory experiences, when bare tree limbs, mesmerizing snowflakes, and bracing winds are balanced by warm clothes, hot drinks, and cozy gatherings.

When the natural world pauses between fall and spring, we, too, can slow down and lean toward introspection and rest. Just as a snowy field resembles a blank canvas, winter is a season that can be shaped by our imagination, and one that offers us space to dream. When we listen to ourselves and take good care of ourselves during the winter, we tend to our inner spark and prepare for new growth in the spring. In the quotes herein, 20 women speak to winter’s charm, quiet power, and striking beauty.

1Kelsi Turner, writer and photographer

“Winter is a time to slow. To grab hold of that wheel that spins your days too quickly and give it a firm tug. To let your thoughts catch up with your body. To pin down that idea that’s been circling your mind for months. To remember that life isn’t an emergency.”

2Edith Sitwell, poet

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand, and for a talk beside the fire. It is time for home.”

3Taylor Swift, singer-songwriter

“I love the scents of winter! For me, it's all about the feeling you get when you smell pumpkin spice, cinnamon, nutmeg, gingerbread, and spruce.”

4Mary Oliver, poet

“Snow was falling, so much like stars filling the dark trees that one could easily imagine its reason for being was nothing more than prettiness.”

5Virginia Woolf, writer

“Never are voices so beautiful as on a winter's evening, when dusk almost hides the body, and they seem to issue from nothingness with a note of intimacy seldom heard by day.”

6Tori Amos, singer-songwriter

“I get a little warm in my heart when I think of winter.”

7Noelle Vignola, writer and social worker

“Winter is the time of sacred balance and rejuvenation of life in preparation for the coming spring. It represents abundance, teaching, and gratitude.”

8Toni Morrison, writer

“Outside, snow solidified itself into graceful forms. The peace of winter stars seemed permanent.”

9Anne Morrow Lindbergh, writer

“Perhaps I am a bear, or some hibernating animal, underneath, for the instinct to be half asleep all winter is so strong in me.”

10Susan Coolidge, poet

“Every fern is tucked and set,
'neath coverlet,
downy and soft and warm.”

11Maria in The Sound of Music

“Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens, brown paper packages tied up with strings, these are a few of my favorite things. … Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles, wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings. … Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes, silver-white winters that melt into springs, these are a few of my favorite things.”

(My Favorite Things, written by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein and famously performed by Julie Andrews)

12Anamika Mishra, writer

“Winter is not a season, it's a celebration.”

13Julia Glass, novelist

“[All] the best pleasures are earned — the fire, the fried oysters; the warmer seasons, too. Who knows the real worth of summer at the beach without a good taste of the seaside in winter?”

14Carol Rifka Brunt, writer

“There’s just something beautiful about walking on snow that nobody else has walked on. It makes you believe you’re special.”

15Aurora, singer-songwriter

“Walking in my sleep like the naked trees — will they wake up again? Do they sleep, do they dream?
Feel it as the wind strokes my skin, I am moved by the chill. Hear the winter bird sing.”

16Elizabeth Camden, writer

“It seems like everything sleeps in winter but it’s really a time of renewal and reflection.”

17Anne Shirley in Anne of Green Gables, written by Lucy Maud Montgomery

“Those trees look as if I could blow them away with a breath — pouf! I'm so glad I live in a world where there are white frosts, aren't you?”

18Kelly Clarkson, singer-songwriter

“First winter here in your arms … Making angels in the snow,
warm, fuzzies, frozen toes …
Swept completely off my feet, this snow globe scene is turning me.
This Christmas Eve, I became we. Don't wake me, please, from this winter dream.”

(Winter Dreams /Brandon's Song, written by Clarkson, Ashley Arrison, and Aben Eubanks)

19Elsa in Frozen

“Let it go, let it go … I don't care what they're going to say. Let the storm rage on, the cold never bothered me anyway.”

(Let It Go, a song written by married songwriters Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, and famously sung by Idina Menzel and Demi Lovato)

20May Sarton, poet

“With no wind blowing, it sifts gently down, enclosing my world in a cool white down, a tenderness of snowing.
It falls and falls like sleep till wakeful eyes can close on all the waste and loss, as peace comes in and flows…
There is nothing to do but drift now, more or less, on some great lovingness, on something that does bless the silent, tender snow.”


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Julia Travers

Julia Travers is a writer who often covers social and cultural topics. Find her at NPR, Art News, YES! Magazine and other outlets. See Full Bio

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