snow on ice

finally, a little snow…
long awaited, ached for
tired crust of old snow
frozen and refrozen
brittle with stress and irritation
a gentle shhhhhhh of wet flakes on ice
cool, calm, breathe

j j j


a bright sun, almost too bright
snow slowly melting back from the edges of the driveway
ice crystals, matted plants
leaving patches of bare ground on southerly slopes
but I can’t get too comfortable
there’s still a cold wind
it refreshes but won’t let me stand still

plants visible
but the ground frozen hard
growing indoors – wheatgrass only now, for the cats (to keep them out of the houseplants)
hungry for green
hungry for growth
hungry for life
that isn’t here yet

j j j


a bit crisper
some sun, a breeze
better defined
but then the day gets sidetracked by one, small problem,
but one which resists resolution for hours
and the rest of the day piles up.
when it’s finally fixed
and I look up
the sun is gone.
The clouds are low and flat and purple in the West.
A few hours later I hear solo piano, a simple nocturne (or two),
a diminuendo into silence.

j j j

fog to hope

fog, just plain fog,
barely freezing and then not at all.
whiffs of warm air float by my nose
tantalizing scents – the spices of spring.
There will still be slush and mud and gray days, but
for today the fog burns off, and there is
sun and birdsong and hope.

j j j


A bright, diffuse sun,
glowing snow – soft, radiant
snow looking like clouds, glowing pink, then yellow, then white
as the sun climbs higher.
Upper 30s.
Warm morning, warm day (warmth is relative) –
no hat, no gloves, no coat.
It’s been a long time
and the sun feels good,
and the cool air on my bare head
and I smile through and through.

j j j


another orange moon at dawn
resting in the trees

I run out of time (again)
and feel a little panic-stricken at first
but then (realizing that some of it can, really, honestly, wait),
I manage to let go of my to-do list
and relax and enjoy my busy-ness for a while.

But (naturally) I enjoy it even more when it stops,
or at least slows down for a leisurely conversation
with my new friend, G. (from Gregorian chant),
over coffee and homemade Belgian waffles
and strawberries and maple syrup.

j j j

moon watch

at 6:30 in the morning
a huge, orange moon rests on the western horizon
12 below zero, again

at 6:30 in the evening
everywhere I go, every twist and turn
the full moon follows, up high and watching me

at 8:45 at night
the moon again takes on an orange cast
but this time it’s a lunar eclipse
like looking at the sun through my eyelids

j j j


A tree trunk in shadow stands dark, forbidding, ominous,
blocking me
from the cold glare of the sunlit snow beyond.

character-building times…
cold that retreats for a day
only to come back and linger.
no snow, no rain,
just a dust of flurries riding a mocking wind.
dry cold
my skin cracks
my fingers click against each other
like frozen twigs,
black against a
drained, colorlessness sky.

j j j