Hope in question

Posting this one to earthweal.


Cold comes in the answer
and snow in the wind,
furrows fill with white, while
growling incandescence consumes
branch and twig
in our invocation of the sun we have lost
in the dark night of winter.

In the morning,
the embers cold and pitted with deer tracks,
ash streams, the wind still bitter.

Ice cracks in the north
with a dark voice full of teeth,
and in the wood
a thrush is singing.


Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

21 thoughts on “Hope in question”

    1. The snow gives them all away. I have to make do with looking in the mud for prints as we rarely have snow here. I’ve lived in the north of England though so I have first hand (freezing) experience!

  1. Such beautiful, vivid imagery–yes, the thrush song and the glimpse of spring to come.
    The other morning I walked by a tree and a cardinal started singing, and there were other birds about–it was like a private concert on a winter day.

  2. The terror at winter solstice was that the light wouldn’t come back — that winter would become an enveloping mouth of ice — but there’s that plucky lil’ thrush singing relax, pal. Amen.

  3. A dark voice full of teeth…that’s winter. Blue jays don’t exactly sing, but they certainly keep making their presence known wherever I go. (K)

  4. What a beautiful poem. It reads like it could be put to music – a plaintive folk song in the celtic tradition perhaps. It is quite haunting.

  5. I love the way you built up the snow and ice in your poem and then cracked it open with a thrush’s song, Jane. My favourite lines and phrases that made me shiver: ‘growling incandescence consumes / branch and twig’ and ‘a dark voice full of teeth’ – ice and snow may muffle, but you’ve captured the underlying sounds.

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