Joseph Anthony Petro
Snow descends slowly and soft, like
So many hours and days; drifting
And banking up against houses
And closed garage doors.
And the silence with which it falls,
Lulls us into thinking it will last forever.
You go to sleep and the roads are clear.
You wake and they’ve turned into scrolls
Unfurling in a dazzling emptiness
And a blinding story you cannot make heads
Or tails of, and there’s no way
To even compose a coherent life or a song upon
Such vast, frozen pages.
So why rise at all? Why not
Sink back into bed? Why get on
All that gear and clear off the cars
And shovel the drive when there’s no place to go?
Truly I haven’t a clue, except winter casts
A spell that draws us out of our warm
And familiar lives and into another world,
Another planet called Wonder or Hush.
There is white magic in the steadiness,
In the hypnotic piling up of flat, geometric
Prisms—each one different, infinitesimally small—light—
Hearted and easily dissolved into the ground.
And when we wake to the brilliance
Of such an elaborate, albeit cold opportunity,
One in which we can freely choose to participate, or not;
One in which we bring our own warmth
And sense of adventure, and we step out of our safe space
And into the holy silence, all geared up and as prepared as we can be,
And we trudge in the knee-high drifts until we find a place
Or until a place finds us, and we feel compelled to fall
And make an angel out of our lives; out of the one, geometric,
Light—hearted life of who we really are.