Thursday, October 7, 2010

Poem: January Ice

January Ice

It is frightening,
standing on the river's edge
in the uncertain morning light,
the ice, white and covered
with a then glaze of snow.
you feel the current,
dark and dangerous,
a part of your past
that once plucked you from the shore
and broke you against
the boulders and logjams
that lie hidden under the surface
like sin.

Afraid? Of course you are.
You have felt the cold terror
and wonder if the ice,
hard from a new season,
will carry you, strong as God,
of let you fall
forever in the abyss,

and you wonder,
as you look at the warm light
glowing in the windows on the far side,
as you watch the smoke curling, calling
you home,
if you have the courage to take
a single step.


The picture was taken near Greenwich, New York. You can click on it for a larger version.



Derrick said...

Can't be much that is more frightening than walking on ice, whether or not it's on a frozen river. You manage to make the trepidation very real, Tom.

willow said...

...and miles to go before I sleep! I love the imagery and metaphors here, Tom. Lovely.

Leonora said...

Growing up in NY, our winter skating always took place on frozen lakes and ponds. I still recall lying on our stomachs, trying to see down through the ice. And the sharp cracking sound near a pond's shallow edge, gosh! I can still feel the fear of that sound. Of course, if it was a shallow pond or stream we felt much more daring.