Sunday, February 22, 2015

12 ways of looking at snow

This Sunday's writing prompt was 12 ways of looking at snow.

an arbitrator between autumn and spring
keeping storm scores and stats on plummeting temperatures

a cat burglar, sneaking in on a passing cold front
stealing color, hiding the tricycle and the dog’s dish,
disguising the starkness of trees with fluff, covering its tracks
as it leaves

a bully, sweeping in on a fierce wind,
a white fury casting cold spells,
spinning and dancing like a colorless gypsy
tapping its tambourine fingers against the window panes

A blanket of silence covering sky and earth,
flung out and floating down silently
in heaps and wrinkles

an ice challenge, wicked, cold, and inhospitable
hard as rock, unyielding even to the distant sun

a nightmare like a thief in the night
stealing the familiar, leaving an expanse of
nothingness where light was

a gossamer dream, a fairy tale, a story of
eternal cold dressed in ermine, of diamond faceted jewels
that glitter under a pale moon

a blustery uncle, all noise and fake promises
who rushes in, pulls out his watch, and says, “I must hurry,”
as he dashes off

a lingering guest, one who arrives unexpectedly, expects a
room and food, languishes on the sofa with a hand to her head,
her scarf trailing across the roads and fields and tangling
in the branches of the trees

an artist with a monochromatic palette, painting with broad strokes.

an eraser, an impenetrable veil, a swirl of opaque white, a myriad of genies
escaped and coalesced, their arms and bodies so entwined that no light
pierces their pallid shadows

a silence so profound one can hear only his own heartbeat counting the seconds,
his own blood swishing to the same tempo of snowflakes falling on his sleeve


In Terms of Snow

Tlatim falls like flour from a sifter,
tlamo slaps at the windows like white wings

two mysteries enfolded in the word snow,

the very idea of which, penstla,
will become tomorrow’s deep drifts.
Tlun sparkles in the moonlight,

sotla makes prisms in the morning light,
while here in the lower 48,
snow merely drifts and packs,

powders the ski slopes,
blows itself into sudden squalls,
and turns to slush in the sun.

Eskimo snow terms from

Sunday, February 15, 2015


I dreamed I was the wind—
shrill, harsh, shrieking around the corner of the house
scooping snow and flinging it
amongst the moaning trees,

and as in the way of dreams,
I dreamt I was the snow,
a flurry of helpless flakes
swirling, flying madly in three directions at once—
up, down, sideways, veiling the landscape in torn lace.

In the midst of snow and wind
I was a sparrow clinging to a bending forsythia branch,
feathers fluffed against the cold,
guarding my small, valiant heart
against February’s bared teeth.

And I became what hides behind the wind,
behind the snow, beyond the cold,
that which remains nameless in its vastness
its otherness, its unknowable self
except in dreams. That which writes the world
in symbols we struggle to interpret.

Monday, February 09, 2015

Winter Thoughts

It's snowing Again. Thank goodness. There's about a foot on the ground and an additional 6-8 inches is expected here in my cottage corner by evening. My garden will be happy come springtime. Snow is a great insulator and a good fertilizer. It's also fun to play in.

The little bird I thought was an albino turns out to be leucistic instead. When it alights on the feeder it is barely discernible against the white sky.(

Winter strips the landscape down to its bare bones...

then decorates it in shades of black and white. Still, if you look for them, you can find bits of color.



and sunsets paint their own pictures against the often dreary backdrop of cold and snow.