Word: WinteringWhen to withdraw from the world.

Word: WinteringWhen to withdraw from the world.

Issue 46

, Starters

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Arts & Culture

  • Words Asher Ross
  • Photograph Dudi Hasson

Etymology: To winter means to stay or reside in a given place through the coldest season of the year. It also refers to the act of preserving something through those months. Gardeners do their best to winter their cauliflowers, and grandparents winter in Palm Beach. The word was given new meaning by author and journalist Katherine May in her 2020 memoir, Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times. In her metaphorical usage, wintering refers not merely to surviving a difficult period, but to “the active acceptance of sadness.”  

Meaning: In May’s words, winter is “a fallow period in life when you’re cut off from the world, feeling rejected, sidelined, blocked from progress, or cast into the role of an outsider.” At certain times, often after disruptive life ...

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