Catch the Drift?

     Now, as several scholars (or simply wiseguys on the Interwebs) have pointed out, not every Christmas song we sing or listen to or tolerate in the store, is strictly a Christmas song.  A large number of songs—Let it Snow, Winter Wonderland, Suzy Snowflake, Frosty the Snowman—are technically snow songs, songs about the joys of winter.  They celebrate the magic spell cast by cold white stuff spread like frosting over all the world.

     Postcard artists were just as ready as songwriters to exploit the magic of a snow-covered landscape, with or without a reference to the time of year.  The cozy scene at the top of this column dates to 1907, but over a century later, you can see pretty much the same scene if you happen through the right neighborhood.

     This cozy aerial view comes with no date at all, but the style of that airplane puts it somewhere in the zeroes or tens of the last century.  I wonder if the folks snowed into the farmhouse were expecting company, or resented the intrusion of engine sounds on their silent night.

    The old footbridge also puts us clearly in the country for a nice, heavy snowfall (not terribly cold, I expect, since the creek is burbling along as cheerfully as ever.)

     The artists seem to have figured that snow on the countryside was a lot more picturesque than a snowy street in the city.  Here, as in the poem, we see the moon on the breast of newfallen snow, along with a stately church and a mountain which will make getting downhill for the evening service quick and easy.  (Perhaps someone with a sleigh will give you a lift home.)

     Speaking of downhill, we mustn’t forget there is more to a field filled with snow than just looking at it.  The fun side of snow is at least as important as the picturesque angle.

     Postcards certainly did not neglect the joys of taking a ride on a sled.

     In fact, all the joys of playing in, and with, snow were covered by the postcard companies.

     This is not to say that they neglected the quiet joys of a leisurely walk in the newly-decorated landscape.

     Or perhaps a boat ride, so you could experience even more of the view.

     While taking a ride in the family car was a sure way to make you feel sorry for your snowbird neighbors who headed off somewhere else where they didn’t have any snow at all.  I see no teardrops on this card, so it was sent by someone who was being brave about the poor souls who miss all the fun.

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