“A Warmer Wind”

Read "A Warmer Wind", a poem about spring.

When the light grew longer
         and the snow began its ease to rain
the Narragansett would crouch
         in silence in the marshlands
until an oak’s leaf was the size
         of a mouse’s ear, into which
spring whispered that the shad
         would soon be running –
that the ice would soon have thawed, 
         and, with it, heartbeats slowed in winter
would turn to drumbeats in the spring –
         an honor song for all that lasted
to nourish and to warm.

If only we could learn the ready signs
         that tell us when the sun has shifted –
then we, too, could wait
         with knowing patience
on the brighter seasons – that if only
         we could last until the thaw
a warmer wind would surely rise
         and help us know our heartbeats better –
and you and I, paused together
         to share a clean winter silence,
could be more than a pair of trembling pilgrims
         crouching streamside, eyeing the bare branches
of oaks, fearfully unsure of our rhythms, of light,
         and of seasons.

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