Poems of the Season

Nothing New 
New snow piled on old snow turns to old
snow under more new snow. Thus the winter
goes. Leave the house and track some bold
new tracks out into more of the same. Enter
the commerce of the coffee shop, and mark
in every face you meet the color of the day.
Converse if you've a mind for it. "Stark
enough for you?" or "Thinking of moving away?"
But more likely you'll sit by yourself and observe
the dogs tied to a bike rack outside. No bikes,
just dogs. Big dogs with lots of thick fur.
They look back as if they haven't seen the likes
of you before. One stands up for a better view
then sits back down when he sees you're nothing new.

The Way Snow Hits Water
A damsel with a dulcimer in a vision I once saw. —Coleridge

Lately we‚ve been fishing dry flies
in the snow storms—those of us
who still harbor a hope that trout
are as smart as they are beautiful.
I once saw a televised image of
an Afghani girl playing in the dirt
next to a gun mount.
Arthur Kent, the “Scud Stud,”
narrated that she was her country’s
equivalent of a mall bunny.
Have you truly watched
the way snow hits water?
It’s nothing like bombs,
so occasionally a trout will
take a midge, beyond the
January feast of scud and sculpin,
those obvious ploys
by the food chain,
beyond the duty to survive,
and into the joys of
just being alive.
As usual, we all read too much
into the water, just as
the casual observer might
mistake snow melting
on our cheeks
for tears.