Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tracks in the Snow

Out on a walk as snow comes down
in dense diagonals ahead,
the distant air quite white yet still
translucent so that trees retain
their winter blacks, houses their red
brick shades and bushes their dark greens…

The sidewalk’s covered and pristine.
I am the first to press my print
into this virgin, crystalline
seal of an aging Winter as
it drenches flakes but has the air
of half believing that it’s Spring…

Indeed it’s weirdly quiet here,
I’m all alone, no cars, no sound,
the snow’s absorbed all noise and din,
it seems I own this landscape by
myself, the last to walk the path,
the past alone around me now,
no sign, no hint of future time…

Then like a miniature tide
I glimpse a single track approach:
I’m starting a new block. Steps in
the snow, their gender indistinct,
not large, not small—but purposive!
At every driveway in they go.
To every porch they quickly mount.

Aha! I think, as patterns now
appear, as time resumes its tick,
as future reasserts itself,
as I’m no longer quite alone.
Those tracks— surely they must belong
to someone working for La Poste
who carries news once valued most.

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