Sunday, April 8, 2012

Walking on a Cold Winter's Night

on the northern prairie
the sun settles in sublimity
a gentle mother's hush
into the blanket of winter snow

it paints the december ditch bank
where the shouldered pines gather
while careful does slide beneath
the skirts on their way to pond

over by the farm, the rooster goes still
as the last gasp of light
dims through the break in boards
while the outside wind echoes the sun's demise

over where the bare trees
mark the fence line, there is one
small and final explosion of blaze
before the stalks and branches turn shadow

on this cold winter's night
old men will peek curtains
to redless thermometers
while the chimney above billows gray

the lake will crack sharply at midnight
and the freezing maple will reply
the owls will sleep, waiting it out
while the moon grows a holy shroud

it is here, in this harshest of times
when life is at its fullest
it is here i am most alive
walking in the silent explosion
in the warmth, of a cold winter's night