Finally the sun
gilds the hollows in the snow.
A new day begins.
Sitting in the dark,
dotted with little red, yellow, blue, and green lights
from small appliances, computers, rechargers,
and the digital clock on the stove.
Sitting in the dark,
in the glow of the computer screen.
So, technically, not really in the dark at all.
In the semi-dark, quasi-dark, pseudo-dark;
the dark that’s too dark to do anything
but type but too bright to sleep.
So I sit and I type about the almost dark and wonder
why I’m awake at four in the morning.
Sitting in the dark.
Darkness drains between the branches,
spills across the forest floor,
hides in shade of crumbling logs
left from trees that went before.
Hides in shadowed nooks and crannies
hidden on the forest floor.
Brightly singing sunshine rises
pushes darkness farther back
hounding shadows into hiding
into deepest, darkest cracks,
as if day were in denial
that the night could e’re come back.
But soon enough the song will change
as sunshine slides away to sleep
and the shadows all unwind
to begin their upward sweep.
Cooling breath that sings the scales
from earth to sky in upward sweep.
Night to day and night again
the endless dance continues on,
and though our brains try to ignore it,
hearts beat out the ancient song.
Long to dance in light and shadow,
Long to beat to nature’s song.
T’was on a night, a night like this,
ice crystals in the dark
effervescing ‘round the glow
of street lamps in the park,
and chiming lightly ‘gainst the glass,
a million temple bells
pealing out a gentle prayer that
all would soon be well.
But stepping past the lamp light’s glow
another world appears
where chimes of falling ice crystals
are more like frozen tears
that steam then stiffen, salty drops
littering darkened trails
where winter sharpens icy claws
on frosty iron rails.
Along this trail a stranger came
all huddled in a cloak,
her breath puffed out along the way
like breadcrumbs made of smoke.
She looked back o’er her shoulder twice
while heading t’wards the light
but as she neared her outline blurred,
and vanished in the night.
But just before she disappeared
it seemed I caught a glance
of green leaves twined around her brow,
of flowers in her hands,
and for a second caught the scent
of some sweet garden spice
and thought I heard a silv’ry voice
sing through the chiming ice.
Oh, Summer’s walking Winter’s trails
and carries ‘neath her cloak
the seeds of warmer days to come
from moss to mighty oak.
More patiently than I am, she
is waiting for her chance
to overthrow the icy king
she’s plotting to supplant.
I wait for her to spring the coup,
for Winter, overthrown,
to melt before her radiance
as she sits on his throne.
and with a smile that melts the snow
her vernal court convenes.
The Winter King is dead and gone
Long live the Summer Queen.
But until then I watch ice crystals
play in lamp light’s beams.
and keep her plots of coup d’été
tucked safe within my dreams.
In the dark before the dawn
when all things merge to black and grey
I wonder what would happen if
one morning they just stayed that way.
If the light lost all its power
to refract the spectrum’s hues
and everything stayed black and white
no reds or yellows, greens or blues.
Like I thought the world once was
before colour photography
when I was small and leafing through
old photos of my family
In rickety photo albums filled
with relatives, all long gone.
Grey smiles, grey clothes, grey sunsets
that turn to dark before the dawn,
where all things merge to black and grey
before the lights turn on.