Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The weekend forecast

Fifteen below and wind at sixty,
no way to get the feeder to the cattle;
they'll have to tough it out or not
till the gusting dies down,
if they weren't the neighbor's herd left
in your care you'd forget them-
no, they'd be gone, sold for the pleading
or the settlement, like everything;
you think of cutting the motor off to sit
in the tractor cab awhile, radio songs slowly
fading out as they suck the battery dry-
white nonsense scattering at the windshield
like bits of wreckage hypnotizing
till some kind of sleep comes on-
no sleeping in the house, the bedroom closed,
the kids' rooms too, you only go
to the couch and listen to television voices
calling as if to a lifeboat they don't
know anything about; once in a while the
answering machine, not her, just
your mother or sister, worried, trying to
coax you to the phone, draw you out,
but you're too tired to tell them there's
nothing left here to worry about:
if the gusting doesn't die down soon
the cold will finish all of it.

"Snow" by Debra Nystrom, from Torn Sky

No comments: