Midwinter Thaw


It began slowly. At first we could not hear
the small knock of water
come back from the deep places.
We had gone deaf with cold.
Now we wake and the streets
are water running to water
while overnight the fields have come down from the hills:
slow cows, earth-red and steamy,
they stand around our houses
and allow themselves to be touched.
I feel a light mist lift
on the wind when the wind rises.
On the pond the round ice floats free:
a moon
gone black in black water.
by Katha Pollitt