Thursday, January 17, 2013


Pilgrim Winter

pale, clear but not that clear,
subdued, muted, and surprisingly cold,
in this bleached out less than blooming place, mid-January

some grass is crunchy to my boots
the other blades just cold and not so green
and those tufts of ruddy life rising up between state road 5 and the farmers' fields

a world of earth tones made earthier
by the brief wash of early winter
and this harder but not quite bitter cold after last week's necessary thaw

pale, I say, but mottled, textured
altogether lovely in that subtle wintry way
like her fine skin's surface, with those freckles that promise someday cancer

but now sing the beauty of shading
against a surface lit by this fading light
just short of dusk, just outside your window, just before you call it a day

the sky, glowing but not glorious,
not at all brilliant, but a softer blue
than you remember being broadcast by the prodigal realm of nature

except something you looked into once
the only cool, only soft things
on a steamy August afternoon just off the path in a little patch of shade

this day? call it a day for rambling,
for walking, remembering, composing,
for not forgetting how terribly sad the surface of this place can be

so much given to stubble and shadow
and that killing blast of cold
she (I mean the world) sends as an answer to our pilgrim souls

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