That moment when, despite the calendar, tis neither winter nor spring.
Sepia world of
flattened yellow grasses--
snow artistry having pushed and molded
the long, straw-like weeds
into a sodden mosaic.
Almost black and white world
where ink stroke trees meet to brush
against heavy grey clouds
as they race against the white canvas
of the upended bowl of sky.
Wet winter's passing:
boot heel mark a muddy daiquiri
circled in crystallized ice,
barbed wire edged with
shattered glass ice fragments,
spears of ice hanging,
daggers dripping death should they
release their slippery grip.
Winds bluster cross the hills,
arguing back and forth,
swapping temper and arrogance,
coming to blows, fighting
the skirl of earth.
Sepia, yellowed skins; winter, now ill, dying
yet stubbornly holding on, steel-edged
chills ripping across the glen, cutting to the core--
and shallow-rooted pine gives in to wind
and gravity. A thunderous crack splits
twin-boughs. Evergreen no more.
Glass-paned ice sheets pushed by wave and wind
shatter on the shore: sure sign the door
is open for Spring to slip through.
Soon. She waits for that low lull, that temperamental
debate of superiority to take a breath.
A flash of red breaks the cardinal hold.
Barbed wire drips water now like sap rising,
flattened pine needles are pushed by forces stronger
than gravity. Delicate crocus raises its head
just as robin bursts into song. Neither quite one
nor the other: winter dawdles while spring creeps in.
Solstices and equinox planet passings
mark celestial calendars. Mother Nature
chooses her own time to put Winter to bed;
dragging him off like a recalcitrant child.
You can hear him howl in the wind.