If day after day I was caught inside
this muffle and hush
I would notice how birches
move with a lovely hum of spirits,
how falling snow is a privacy
warm as the space for sleeping,
how radiant snow is a dream
like leaving behind the body
and rising into that luminous place
where sometimes you meet
the people you’ve lost. How
silver branches scrawl their names
in tangled script against the white.
How the curves and cheekbones
of all my loved ones appear
in the polished marble of drifts.
“Shoveling Snow” by Kirsten Dierking, from Northern Oracle. © Spout Press, 2007.