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Posts Tagged ‘weather’


 
 
May I not only see my own shadow
but may I let it wrestle me
the way an angel once met Jacob
then wrestled him till dawn.
May we scrabble and scrap
until I am trembling, exhausted,
until the shadow dislocates what I think I know
about how to move through the world,
until panting I beg it to bless me,
cling to it until it gives me a new name.
I want to know everything
I am capable of—the destruction,
the ferocity, the benediction.
I don’t need to know the weather.
I just want to know that I can meet
whatever comes, even
the darkest parts of myself,
and learn from them,
then limp into the daylight
toward healing, toward wholeness.

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Clean Slate

It’s almost always sunny just before
it snows—just before the sky turns grey
then meets the earth in giant swaths
of blue turned clouds turned snow turned drift,
and haven’t you sometimes wanted
to do that, too—to shift in an instant
from warm to cool, from blue to gray,
to know yourself as the opposite
of what you are, just as a day does,
an entirely new syntax unspooling
in swirling verbs and whirling predicates
so complex you forget who the subject is—
haven’t you wanted to flurry, to blizzard,
to white out until there were no tracks
like sentences left for you to follow?

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Across the country, blizzards—blizzards

so big that folks speak of bombogenesis

while standing in line in the coffee shop.

 

And the snow begins to fall, snow

blocks out the sun, snow fills the roads,

the drives, the sills until people begin to forget

 

who they are when there isn’t a storm.

Imagine the storm goes on.

Imagine that it isn’t snow falling,

 

but forgiveness. Imagine all those people

rising morning after morning to find

themselves buried in compassion.

 

Piles of it. Heaps of it. Giant white drifts of it.

It must be dealt with before anything else

can happen. Before people can even

 

walk out the door, they must lift it

and move it and feel its surprising weight.

Who knew there was so much of it? Who knew

 

just how completely it could shut things down

if not engaged with properly? It takes some time,

perhaps, before the people see

 

how beautiful it is, how every single thing

it touches is softened, turned to sparkle,

turned to shine. A disruption, to be sure,

 

but sometimes it takes a blizzard

to find the calm. Sometimes

we must be stopped

 

before we learn how to go on.

And the colder it gets, the more

we must work to be warm.

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unforecast, this thawing of the heart, a puddle now where yesterday I slipped

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Yesterday, a low gray haze.
A fog. A blur. A sullen shroud.
At dinnertime my young boy says,
Mom, can you guess how much a cloud

would weigh? I guess a thousand pounds.
No, more, Mom, guess again, he says.
Two million pounds? He says, Go down.
I give, I say. He looks away,

then tells me, Half a great blue whale.
And guess how much a storm cloud weighs?
I say, I give again, and smile.
A whole blue whale, he says, then splays

his hands in thrill, and says, Guess how
much hurricanes would weigh?
This time I guesstimate too low—
Perhaps two hundred whales, I say.

By now I’m curious about
how many pods of great blue whales
could swim in squalls of heartsick doubt
and grief, the pea soup kind that swelled

up yesterday. Three hundred whales,
he tells me and I wonder if
the same great number found their way
into my brooding thoughts. He shifts

the conversation to how heat
is what makes clouds suspend up high.
Meanwhile, a foggy thought repeats.
A dozen great blue whales swim by.

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