Beyond the screen of my laptop, I watch as an imposing icicle gradually grows beyond the full length of our bedroom window. Three similar stalactite shapes aren’t far behind. The four of them abreast will resemble prison bars before long. Indeed, Wisconsin winter has barred us in. I smirk at nature’s creation, manifesting my state of mind. Downstairs, the cat too watches out the window. An array of birds fly into the feeder. I hear him slam his body against the sliding glass door from the living room. I grin again, imagining the funny feline mishap as a metaphor for how badly our animal instincts tell us we need to get outside. Yet, winter and windows tell us otherwise.

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