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Temple Cone-IV

The Pure Fields of Winter  





Often the pure fields of winter call us down from the skies.

Born from clouds, the snowflakes of our bodies are so fragile

We melt at a touch and scatter where the wind says we must.


But didn’t those long hours driving across bleak farmlands,

The heavens blinking, fields drowned in shadow, houses unlit,

Insist on the loneliness that we all share, that we all must?


Though it was colder inside the stables than out,

I came to love the warmth of horses’ noses in chill air,

The stalls faintly spiced with summer hay and apple must.


Once, returning to the mountains after many years,

I sought a waterfall where I swam one spring after long illness,

Though the pool had surely dried, as spring waters must.


A half-mile across the fields that last winter, cardinals stained

Snowdrifts like blood drops on a scar.  What did it mean?

Healing, or a new wound?  I can’t say, though I know I must.


Cold offers definition, makes the heavens above us heavens,

The far mountains faraway, the brief sunlight desperately clear.

The wind won’t cease, but we must face into it.  We must, we must.