Poem: Waiting for Snow


Waiting for the Snow

Wind sweeps down the quarry path.
There is a rustling.
The dead reeds rattle in the breeze.

In the distance, a coyote yips
then falls silent.

Somewhere nearby there are people.
This place lies at the edge of town.
From the summit, you seek the smoke of wood stoves.

Wiser men than you, they are burrowed in
against the great snow that approaches.

You can smell it, the snow.
You can feel it. The air pressure dropping
The clouds grow dark. The air grows cold.

This is a weakness of yours,
the waiting for storms. The willingness

to stand and watch their approach,
the inevitable nearing of apocalypse.

Your fear of storms has become something else –
a fascination. You have survived so many,
terrible, unpredictable things.

You have lost all.
You have survived and in that survival comes knowledge,
understanding that we are far less fragile than we believe,

that storms change the landscape and the soul,
but there is as much beauty in the new as the old.

Tomorrow, they say, you will not be able to pass here.
The snow will fill the path. Rocks will slide.

The rough places will disappear and become more dangerous.
It will be good to be in your home down below. Warm. Safe.

But only for a while. There will be new storms
and you will stand here again.

About this poem.

This began as an essay. It’s better as a poem.

The picture was taken in the quarry across the street.

They are predicting 12″ to 18″ snow tonight.  I’m sitting at the diner. Here in Vermont, things don’t change because of the threat of snow. Life goes on.

I like it here. It suits me.



  1. My sister, who now lives in Mississippi, asked me if I was going to be alright and did I have enough food as we might have 2 feet of snow here in eastern VT. My reply is that they have big plows, so unless the power goes out, I’ll be fine.

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