Articles and Recordings
December 21, 2010
A Winter Poem
by Stephen Orsary
The mountain reflects a ghost out onto the sea.
Dipping into a curve of distant current,
Cold air and water touch lips
And exhale a fervent cloud,
A masking fog that reaches beyond sight
And the midnight touch of lunar shadows.
He stands in the light and casts his shade before him.
This planet stands between
The sun and you.
He projects his silhouette onto your face,
A slow half-circle rolling across,
Stroking your pale cheeks into a flush,
Enticing you into the shadows
And drawing the curtain behind.
Have you been overshadowed, outshone, obscured?
Do you hide from burning eyes,
Have you had enough for another 372 years?
Do you retreat,
Are you prudently discreet,
Do you love?
You fade to winter black for a sensible period.
Then you re-emerge wound in halo rings,
A rainbow blush,
Renewed and spent.
The clouded moon, the winter, descends,
Prepared to pass below the edge of the world
And sleep for months on end.
And everywhere, everyone else is going away:
Into the ground,
Into the wilderness,
Into the distance.
Conversations are taking too long,
And rancor rises from the mouths of babes.
Everything, even an apology, is criticized.
But below the vague full moon,
The solstice turns the year on a dime,
And an angel wing spreads over the sky
In feathered ridges, like fish-scales.
Archangels silently stalk the sidewalks,
Placidly staring through curtains,
Waiting to be asked in, or sent on.
A fire smolders in the grate,
And just as a question rises like smoke in my throat,
Just the right stone spirit rises from below
And takes shape along my spine,
Glazing the bone with amethyst or iron.
Or fool's gold.
Depending on what is needed.
The moonlight returns.
Midnight has passed.
Everything moves on.
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