A Frozen Peace

The woods outside my door

Are begging me to plunge into their

Snow covered depths,

With fresh fallen powder 

To crunch beneath my boots. 

The still and frozen air

Is heavy with the silence

Of a thousand stifled thoughts.

My heart thuds quietly in my chest

And my breath fogs the space around me

Before being whisked away on the breeze. 

Fallen trees and hardy saplings 

Provide an obstacle course for my 

Hike among the bowing trees. 

Nature holds its breath

On the late December day,

Its furious frozen temper

Abates

And for a moment the world 

Is at peace

While I am left longing for the peace of your presence. 

Poetry Sunday: Robert Frost

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

A Smoldering Snowflake

The chilly autumn air waxes and wanes in strength

by the slow-moving sleepy waterway. 

Gondolas float leisurely up and down the river,

leaving gentle ripples in the ever darkening surface

and making the drifting braziers nod with every undulation.

I can feel the smoldering heat from my 

seat on the cold stone banks of the river,

watching the crackling pops of wood throw sparks into the air. 

I told you then, of the scars the littered my body

of the despair and despondency that put them there,

and of the hate that nearly put an end to me.

With the most tender of touches you held my face

and caught the tears as they trailed down my cheeks.

When you held me in your arms that night,

I was surrounded by the fire of your existence

burning hotter than the flaming river,

burning brighter than the sparks that fluttered down 

to settle on our cheeks

like a red-hot snowflake’s gentle kiss.

Your lips have burnt away the fragments of those atrocious emotions,

and with fingers locked together

you made manifest the passion I thought 

I had locked away for good.

Oh how fortunate am I of all

to know you who wipes clean the slate,

remembers the marks and calls them proof of strength.

I Wish I Knew You

When I say I wish I knew you, I mean more than I wish I knew who you were at the moment the citadels fell to pieces. To say I wish I knew you is to say I wish I knew the deep dark parts of you from your own lips – and not those of the front porch gossips’. I wish you had given me the keys to those locked up rooms hidden in the basement of your soul. There are many things from which I run, but you, you are not one of them. Didn’t you know that we all have demons and darkness in us? Or did you believe you were cursed in your birth, destined to whittle the years away without the light? I wish I knew you before the moment I met you. Perhaps then it would have ended differently. Who told you that the shadows inside you were unfortunate? Look up at midnight when the world is bathed in gloomy shades of black and you’ll see the fiery pinpricks that only appear when the world’s lamp has gone away. I wish I knew you then, when you ran wild on the earth and danced in the shimmering snows. Back then, you didn’t worry about your footprints marring the purity of fresh fallen snow. Back then, your darkness didn’t scare you and you reveled in the thin line between light and dark. You trusted, you fell, you got back to your feet. And now you are on your knees, and so am I. We came so far, climbed over so many barriers, and I thought we had conquered the world. Your voice cracks and pleads for understanding. One question stands between us, bouncing back and forth. Why lie, why lie, why lie? I should have known that a beguiling candor would hide the ugly bits. No one is so full of light as I believed you to be. I wish we could go back, I wish I had shown you my darkness earlier. Maybe then you would have believed me when I said I would love you, even if the void circled in your hands. I wish I knew you.

The Legend of the Seasons: Winter

Once, a very long time ago, when humanity could speak with earth and understand the strange language of the trees, the world was free and glorious. Even the seasons were not confined to the invisibility of the skies, but walked among mankind, conversing easily with any they came across. Of all the seasons, Winter was by far the loneliest. She often tread barefoot along the forest paths, a thin cape draped and clinging to her skin. Where she walked, snow flurries drifted from her, rolling off her shoulders, and ice spread in cracked glass spider-webs over the dirt. A crown of snowbells woven by the hands of a child circled her forehead, a considerable contrast to her skin and hair. Few people ever walked with the Winter, leaving her to discover the world on her own. loneliness was a companion, but she grew accustomed to the shadow, and learned to enjoy its presence. The quiet opened her ears to the whispers in the trees and the rumblings of the earth. Some days were spent sitting to watch the sun walk across the sky, kissing the treetops in the morning and the evening. She avoided towns and searched out the wide open spaces of the North, contenting herself to watch humanity from afar, save for the few moons each year when the others gave up their domains to her icy touch. And so in the North she resides, observing the planet and watching it grow, in a glacial convent of population one.

-22

09:00

My head down against the wind

Weaving between and around the slow-moving

Feet of a thousand other people.

Their shuffling steps echo with fickleness

A chaos so carefully refined to pass for everyday life.

Bumped elbows and stepped on toes I 

Leave behind, while glares burn into my coat-covered back.

My nose tucked into the bright red scarf

Wrapped tight around my face

The crimson cardinal flaunted in the ivory world.

I step with conviction across the snow-covered bricks

Winding my way through the seemingly endless 

Torrent of humanity.

-22

06:00

The small bathroom is warm from the heat of the radiator, condensation gathering on the cold window panes. Locking the door behind me, I turn the water on, wincing at the seemingly deafening sound of the water striking the tub in the early hour. Steam rises in delicate swirls, twining about itself into the cool air, disappearing in wisps.

I toe off my trainers and set them outside the door. Shucking my sweat suffused clothes into a pungent pile, I step into the hot water, letting it flow over my aching muscles. The quiet room fills with the smells of my shampoo and soap, the scents mingling pleasantly. I scrub my body until I no longer smell of the gym, and then stand under the scalding stream (apparently the water pipes can’t decide on an even temperature).

My skin is bright red from the heat when I step out and wrap the towel around myself. I wipe down the mirror and see that my cheeks are flushed to match the colour of the sunrise. Back in my room, I move quietly through the motions of my morning routine. Almost automatically I start the Insta-Kettle, force pomade through my still-damp hair, rub lotion over my legs and arms.

Light cascades in through the window, finally breaking over the top of the buildings across the street.

I stand as a sentinel dressed in jeans and a white t-shirt, watching the street covered in its ghostly pallor.

-22