Wintering utilizes all four transpositions of Messiaen's third mode. This structure was not predetermined when I began. I decided to begin in one transposition of the mode, and when I got to the fifth measure, I was really hearing an F in the melody, which was not available to me in the mode I was using. So I had to make a decision, do I stay in the transposition, or modulate so I can use an F, and I chose to modulate. Then it made sense to work through the other transpositions of the mode in the same way. This sort of decision making happens quite often. A natural desire gives way to a structure, as I work. This piece ended up with a quite a lot of dominant seventh chords. Interestingly, just a few years ago I wouldn't have chosen them. Now I'm ready for them I guess - they remind me of Debussy, one of my favorite composers. To my ears Messiaen is an extension and expansion of Debussy.
We have a real winter happening here this year. I'm into it. It keeps us humble.