Poem: Ice Walk

Ice West Rupert.jpg

Ice Walk

Frozen fog coats the trees.
The snow has turned to ice,
victim of a partial thaw before cold sets back in
to stay.

The ponds are mostly frozen,
a small patch of water remains,
a resting place for late-flying geese.

The stillness is foreign, strangely wonderful.
Sane humans are locked away in their warm houses
while you walk,
while you stop.

Thinking is easy here.
Nothing competes with the flow of thoughts,
nothing interrupts or sways you.
You can see your breath.
You can feel your thoughts,
painful and joyful both,
raw as the cold.

Underneath your feet, sticks and ice crackle,
break,
and announce your coming.

You see the geese. They grow alert. Wary. Watchful.
one step too close and there is a flapping of wings,
a flurry of primal fear and they fly,
wings moving air, moving sound as they soar skyward.

You smile as you wave your arm, wizard-like,
sending them your blessing and your pain,
both finally flying south, leaving you alone,
your mind quiet as the landscape,
ready at last to turn homeward.

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