Poetry Friday:Snow by Kenneth Rexroth

farm in fogPhotograph by Jon Katz @ BedlamFarm.com

We have had no snow whatsoever, and I am quite glad of it.  Although, every once in a very great while, I miss it.  It would be nice, I think in those moments, to be looking out at blankets of white snow covering up the browns and greys of a snow-less winter.  At such times, I am glad for poetry and photographs of wintry scenes.   Soon enough (next Wednesday, the weatherman says) it will snow…and, at the moment, the thought makes me happy.

Snow  by Kenneth Rexroth

 

Low clouds hang on the mountain.
The forest is filled with fog.
A short distance away the
Giant trees recede and grow
Dim. Two hundred paces and
They are invisible. All
Day the fog curdles and drifts.
The cries of the birds are loud.
They sound frightened and cold. Hour
By hour it grows colder.
Just before sunset the clouds
Drop down the mountainside. Long
Shreds and tatters of fog flow
Swiftly away between the
Trees. Now the valley below
Is filled with clouds like clotted
Cream and over them the sun
Sets, yellow in a sky full
Of purple feathers. After dark
A wind rises and breaks branches
From the trees and howls in the
Treetops and then suddenly
Is still. Late at night I wake
And look out of the tent. The
Clouds are rushing across the
Sky and through them is tumbling
The thin waning moon. Later
All is quiet except for
A faint whispering. I look
Out. Great flakes of wet snow are
Falling. Snowflakes are falling
Into the dark flames of the
Dying fire. In the morning the
Pine boughs are sagging with snow,
And the dogwood blossoms are
Frozen, and the tender young
Purple and citron oak leaves.

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11 thoughts on “Poetry Friday:Snow by Kenneth Rexroth

  1. So many powerful images of the snow hanging over the countryside before it falls. We, too, have been snowless so far, but we may get a dusting this weekend. I hope your first snow is magical and doesn’t cause too many headaches.

  2. It snowed all day, but lightly today. Last winter for all of you in the east was enough maybe? This is lovely, loe that view he describes when the clouds drop down the mountainside. Arvie’s favorite camping was camping in the mountains in the winter, with snow. I’ve done it a few times with my students, oh so cold!

  3. Tara, that poem allows me to spend time in the quiet of thought. I have written about the fog during December and am amazed by the lines I read in this poem: All Day the fog curdles and drifts. Strong visuals for me: Is filled with clouds like clotted Cream/The
    Clouds are rushing across the Sky and through them

  4. “It would be nice, I think in those moments, to be looking out at blankets of white snow covering up the browns and greys of a snow-less winter.” I liked those lines best of all! Thank you! Time will come!

  5. “the fog curdles” “like clotted cream”–lovely lovely thick images, just like the sodden snow. My favorite bit is learning with surprise that the watcher watches from his tent!

    Last year I had more than enough of snow, but this year the warm December and the prospect of NO snow has me hankering for it!
    Thanks for this one, Tara, and Happy 2016!

  6. I commented elsewhere wondering if snowy winters will become a story we tell our children, like the story of black and white TV…

  7. We would have liked some of the white stuff when we drove to PA for the holidays. It was most disappointing to my kids, who have only lived in warm climates, but I guess there’s no arguing with Mother Nature. They will have to wait a few years more for the faint whispering of snowflakes. Thanks for the beautiful poem, Tara.

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