Dawn will bring none but
another cold morning.
Gray cast bears little light to
shine on trees, naked,
in search of lost leaves.
North winds comes, he blows
the white breath from heaving horses
until it disappears through
Thorns of berriless brambles
snag your gown, twist below
and ensnare your footfall.
Blood drips from pin pricks
around your ankles,
pain not felt for want of warmth.
No bird seeks fire in December’s
dark days. Shiver of furry beast
raises heart’s heat
when to drink there is only ice water
from a frozen pond.
Many men marching, held captive
by the sound of their own footsteps.
Sound of footsteps spelling out
demise, counting out a row of
graves, winter’s sleeping dirt disturbed.
Their anxious breath exhaling fear.
Cold is cold when rain turns to ice
as it catches on boughs,
reaching down with such sharp tines
growing heavier with nightfall.
Closed eyes in warm bowery
hear only crystal clear snaps
as innocent limbs are felled
whose strength is no match
for winter’s weighted cloak.