Winter Blog



I’m taking a respite from a short story I’m writing to talk about winter. Specifically, winter in Massachusetts. Now, this winter has been quite a mild one. The only snow my little town has seen was on Halloween. At the time, it seemed a portent of doom, this early snowfall at the end of October. A sign that the climate gods were unhappy and frustrated. A statement of mistrust and disapproval from ye gods on high. Often we can get a dusting of snow in October, but not generally this type of significant storm that causes power outages, downed tree limbs, and all the other usual accoutrements of winter. A weariness set upon many; those of us who intensely dislike clearing our cars of ice and snow, those who have long commutes to work, who aren’t skiers or snowmobilers, we who get little joy out of the white stuff. We anticipated a long, dreadfully difficult season.

Turns out though, we got depressed prematurely. Because since that October storm, we’ve had nothing more than a few flakes of snow in the air. We’ve experienced some very warm days when not only didn’t we need boots, hats, and mittens, but we didn’t even need jackets. This is freaky, I tell you. It is not usual. I had to ask my virtual friend from Canada to write a poem about snow for me, because I can’t write about what I don’t see. I told him: write about the starkness of the trees in winter, your breath clinging to the atoms of air in front of you, the moss peaking up from under the snow. Of course he didn’t (I don’t have much luck with persuading people to do my bidding.)

Do I actually miss the snow? No, that can’t be. But perhaps I miss writing about it. So, here’s a first draft on a winter poem. Be kind – I have nothing to go on this year.


Winter poem

Turkeys drenched in frozen rain
Peck at the desolate, rock hard ground
Crowd around the tiny patch of moss green
Peaking up from under the snow
Flutter and run at the sound
Of the garage door opener

And before you drive through the doors
Stop at the mailbox at the side of the road
Step onto the ice pavement
Brave the storm, the sloppy snow
And watch your breath cling to the atoms of air
In front of you
Collect the junk mail flyers
And discount magazine offers
Back in the car, honk at the birds
And drive through the gates of heavenly warmth
The blessed garage

While the turkeys
Fly confused up into the lacy trees
Stark nude, with their brown twilight dress
And hunker down for more

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