Midwinter poem

Why are you so forlorn my love
In this midwinter storm
Old man winter's half spent
His strength still formidable but diminished
And the days have started their slow climb towards the height of summers long day
The rains have come again though
They've not yet washed the earth
Of the ice and dirty snow
But the ground beneath is softened now
And its only a matter of time 
Til the birch-sap begins to flow
Keep laying out seeds of faith my love
For the sparrow and the chickadee
And let their chattering warm your heart
And do not begrudge the deer the cedar in the backyard
While all nature awaits in reverent silence
For the warmth and grace of spring
Last summer the gods blessed your garden
The tiny apple-tree nearly broke beneath the weight
A harvest to remember and apple pie for Christmas
The dahlias looked radiant in the midnight sun
And even still the parsley in your greenhouse hangs on
You must have known even then, the winter would be long
It's the way of the world my love
This sacred circle of life and death 
Like the dry bulbs you have stored
Silent on a cold and dark cellar shelf
Carefully wrapped and stored in hope
Of the warmth and new life of spring
You and I have grown old my love
Our love like the gnarled old pine
Where your father's swing still hangs
There is yet strength enough in our limbs
To bear our children's children's weight
And the snows of winters yet to come
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Januarian's picture

I really, really like this

I really, really like this poem.  The imagery is very vivid, and conveys the emotion so intensely.  I did have a bit of a stumble over the 19th and 21st lines, and the "Tis" in the 25th line (too archaic); but, other than those very minor questions, this is a majorly beautiful poem.


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karlmcallister's picture


Thanks for the comments! I'll reconsider those lines. I kinda agree with you about the archaic tone of line 25, but I kind of like the sound of it too...


Not quite sure what you mean by line 19 and 21. Am I unclear?

Januarian's picture

No, the fault is mine, I did

No, the fault is mine, I did not comment clearly.  The mention of "gods" in line 19, followed by "Christmas," which is a monotheistic holiday, seems, to me at least, to be contradictory.  It was on that basic alone that I questioned the lines.  The poem is still beautiful and quite an accomplish ent.


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Stephen's picture