Powder

[98/03/10]

Mid-March miracle
After most of a dry and sterile winter:
Four, six, eight inches of glorious powder!
And I -- I, for the third day running,
This time even playing justifiable hookey,
Went forth to revel in the abundance of blustery white,
So soon to vanish for who knew how long.

Across gentle hills and rolling plains,
Past stark tree clumps and leaning fences,
Among blizzard and sun and dazzling shadow,
I and my skis glided alone together:
Whispering down dunes, drift-wraiths snaking before us;
Skating through feathers, tossing up moondust;
Sweeping as a water-strider over some pond transformed.

It could not last, nor I in that biting cold.
Yet for an hour it was pure glorious, white-gold magic.
And though at the end I was more than glad
To return to the warmth of indoor life,
With its comforting clutter and smallness,
I will not forget, even in August,
The feel of powder.