09 December 2011

white and clean {a poem}

The year's first snowfall is
of course
the topic of conversation at the office
as we all get our morning coffee.

"I'm not ready for winter," someone says.

"But it had to come, didn't it?" someone replies,
trying to be truthful and realistic.

The snow brings it out in us,
this ancient desire for honesty and fortitude,
conjuring up forebears
with a barn full of hay
and a cellar full of canned tomatoes,
ready for the winter.

The world has turned white and clean,
and we want to see the best in others
and in ourselves.

1 comment:

  1. You can take the woman out of Iowa...

    Your nice poem inspired a quick reverie for me (you can take the man out of Chicago...):

    A Gift

    As I walk to my car after work,
    I strike up a conversation
    with a stranger about the weather.
    “It’s going to get cold this week,” I say.
    “Tomorrow, the high will be 25
    and the low 11.”
    He, an older Hispanic gent
    who may have grown up
    without winters, says,
    “I don’t like winter.”

    I think about my one winter in
    Orange County; mornings were often
    identical to the morning before,
    a vapid timelessness.

    I’ve loved winter
    a little more since then.
    Last year, while shoveling
    yet another big snow that,
    along with others, added up to
    twenty inches above average
    for the season,
    I thought
    I’m going to miss how this winter
    made me feel alive.



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