Sunday, December 8, 2013

Surprised by snow


Today, eastern Pennsylvania was surprised by snow--much more of it than we'd been expecting.   I've been cleaning, cooking, and enjoying Nico's reaction to what might be his first deep snowfall.



There he is, the little black blob on the left.  He seems to find the world beyond the fence much more fascinating today.  As do I.

Because I wasn't expecting a mini-blizzard, I hadn't prepared a cache of snow poems, so I turned to my Facebook friends and I was not disappointed.   There were many suggestions, some of which I will need to keep in reserve for winter days to come.  

For today, though, thanks to David Sanders, for suggesting a poem by Donald Justice that hauntingly captures the hush of snowfall in an unexpected place:

Absences

It's snowing this afternoon and there are no flowers.
There is only this sound of falling, quiet and remote,
Like the memory of scales descending the white keys
Of a childhood piano--outside the window, palms!
And the heavy head of the cereus, inclining,
Soon to let down its white or yellow-white.

Now, only these poor snow flowers in a heap,
Like the memory of a white dress cast down...
So much has fallen.

And I, who have listened for a step
All afternoon, hear it now, but already falling away,
Already in memory.  And the terrible scales descending
On the silent piano; the snow; and the absent   
     flowers abounding.





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