New Poem/Pale Desert

I went for a run/walk/stagger through an arctic wonderland today, i.e. my new neighborhood. Fresh snow had fallen, covering my tracks, and at places, the snow reached up over my knees. Here’s a poem about it…

Pale Desert

The tracks I made yesterday are gone,
lost under the weight of new snowfall,
never to be seen by a human eye again.

I stand and study the pale land,
honest as salt, powerful as the moon.

The new fall looks like the remnants
of stars that have exploded and scattered.

A few miles away, snow is protecting crops
from the cold. A few more miles away,
a wolf is lying above ground, belly full.

The world is as calm as the feathers
on the back of a sleeping goose.

I take off, making fresh tracks, bringing
my knees up high. I run like I did when
I was a child, when I needed to touch
every bit of winter before it disappeared.

On the smooth white sands, great patches
of ice rest, shimmering like liquid moonstone.

The fresh snow under the trees
absorbs all sound. I’m quiet as I move,
as though I’m walking across furs.

Where the ground is exposed, it wears
a pale, shell delicate crown.

My feet break through, the air fills
with the noise of splintering.

I could stay out here all day, watching
snow shift with the wind, but my ears
are thick with cold, my cheeks starting
to blister. It’s time to hurry home, to
cradle tea and thaw.

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