The year of snow. The ode to disaster. The song
written in ice; magnificent vowels cut in frost, glittering
like icicles hanging from the wych-elm’s glassy bough.
The year of cold. Drops, milky as pearls, frozen on tips
of eyelids, tears on the statue’s lids by the sanctuary;
the lyricist of stone, set above frenzied squirrels, chin
poised above peacocks, grass. Is it the challenge of the bust
we avoid, the tilt of the head, eyes piercing the cloud of snow?
Because, in the pond, a rose frozen, redder than cannabis, glows
through the ice like a fever blazing towards death. . .
Someone had thrown the rose from the flagstones,
and now the bust and the rose, rigid as memories
of rage, wait for what touch, what force
to thaw into the present sense.
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