The Yuletide lights are packed away,
Grey leaves creep down the street.
The trees at dusk are shades of grey,
Grey sky makes grey complete.
The old man mutters as he scrapes
His trash can to the curb.
The trees complain and sway their shapes
As gusts their peace disturb.
A solitary sparrow picks
A solitary seed
Out from the desiccated sticks
To slake its piercing need.
Thin clouds scud past the frozen moon,
The distant highway drones,
Debris from windy storms lies strewn,
The path gives way to stones.
We’ve reached the nadir of the year,
The time when flowers sleep.
No wish can make them reappear
From their repose so deep.
NOTES: We had one of those exciting winter storms last week in the Pacific Northwest, complete with snow and strong winds. The lights flickered, but thankfully, this time the power did not go off. The walking paths were littered with the branches and boughs of many an evergreen. A few weaker trees in the woods were blown completely over. The consolation was that for a few days afterwards, my walks were suffused with the most pleasant fragrance of cedar and pine.