Winter Storm Watch

The sky is still; no flakes appear
and yet we know that they will come.
Held hostage by our doubts and fears
we beat out warnings on our drums.

We know, for sure, the flakes will come;
we may be buried to our ears
or slip and slide and break our bums —
lose everything we hold most dear.

We may be buried to our ears,
run out of fuel and freeze to death,
lose everything we hold most dear
as we expire with frosted breath.

Without our fuel, we’ll freeze to death.
Have we got pasta, milk and beer?
As we exaggerate our fears
the sky is still; no flakes appear.


Pantoum at the Living Room Window

Feline accordions hum their tunes
as snow glows deep as weighted slumber.
Paths through night are marked with runes
and dreams impossible to number.

Snow glows, as deep as weighted slumber.
Tall pines put on their white dunce caps.
Our dreams? Impossible to number,
adrift on incoherent maps.

Tall pines put on their white dunce caps;
deer strip the shrubs of puny quills.
Their hooves leave incoherent maps.
Enslaved by hunger, never filled.

Deer strip the shrubs of puny quills,
seek succor in the smallest blade.
Enslaved by hunger, never filled.
their eyes flash avid and afraid.

No succor in those tiny blades.
While we, inside, sit fat and warm,
their eyes flash avid and afraid,
uncertain they’ll survive the storm.

While we, inside, sit fat and warm,
Feline accordions hum their tunes.
We know that we’ll survive the storm,
Glean secrets from the darkest runes.


Catherine Wald’s chapbook, Distant, burned-out stars, was published in June 2011 (Finishing Line Press). Her poetry was awarded Honorable Mention in Sarah Lawrence College Writing Institute’s 2011 Gurfein Fellowship Competition and she was received a fellowship from New York Foundation for the Arts Mark 2012. Catherine has published poems in American Journal of Nursing, Chronogram, Friends Journal and Westchester Review and is author of The Resilient Writer (Persea 2004) and a translation of fiction from the French. Articles have appeared in Journal of Creative Nonfiction, Poets & Writers and Writer’s Digest.

Featured Image: “Figures Loading A Horse Drawn Cart On The Ice” by Charles Henri Joseph Leickert

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