I’m winter

The sky open in its grayness

A depth summer never understands

I’m the season you give yourself up to sleep

To the hours that make no sense except

Your body follows the sky’s mutations

The moon’s pull, the light receding

And returning.


We rejoice at June’s long light

But winter makes us who we are.


I’m winter.

My words written to the dirge

That Cathy’s death marked on my skin.

The marks I can’t ever erase

Until it no longer matters

Until time added more markings to me:

Ones I’ll never understand that singe hope

Until hope stands.


Hope always stands in winter

Until you say hello.

Why the hell not?

I’ll add my dirge to your wings.

I’ll add my grey to your scarlet-tipped song.

Let’s sing.

-Nancy Schatz Alton, 1.4.2018

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