Winter Poems

by Laura K. Secor

Image by Willgard Krause from Pixabay

Winter’s Sweet, Sweet Song

Let the darkness of the longest night hold me,
Let the peace of the Winter Earth enfold me,
In silence,
Resting in the embrace of soil,
On a bed of fallen leaves,
My Mother, sleeping, breathes.

Free my mind of restlessness,
Show me not what tomorrow will bring,
As I lay in this moment of stillness,
In complete and utter acceptance I sing.

I hear the melody of a year in whispered voices,
Let not my thoughts of the past be clouded,
With wishes and future choices,
Only this moment,
And my honouring of a year nearly gone,
In harmony with the Sun,
And Winter’s sweet, sweet song.

— Damh the Bard

Snowy Night

Last night, an owl
in the blue dark
tossed an indeterminate number
of carefully shaped sounds into
the world, in which,
a quarter of a mile away, I happened
to be standing.
I couldn’t tell
which one it was –
the barred or the great-horned
ship of the air –
it was that distant. But, anyway,
aren’t there moments
that are better than knowing something,
and sweeter? Snow was falling,
so much like stars
filling the dark trees
that one could easily imagine
its reason for being was nothing more
than prettiness. I suppose
if this were someone else’s story
they would have insisted on knowing
whatever is knowable – would have hurried
over the fields
to name it – the owl, I mean.
But it’s mine, this poem of the night,
and I just stood there, listening and holding out
my hands to the soft glitter
falling through the air. I love this world,
but not for its answers.
And I wish good luck to the owl,
whatever its name –
and I wish great welcome to the snow,
whatever its severe and comfortless
and beautiful meaning.

— Mary Oliver

To Know the Dark

To go in the dark with a light is to know the light.

To know the dark, go dark. Go without sight,

and find that the dark, too, blooms and sings,

and is traveled by dark feet and dark wings.

— Wendell Berry