You tell me Old Man Winter
exists only in poetry,
but I’m here to tell you he’s real,
and he’s in my back yard right now!
Oh, yeah? What does he look like? you ask.
Is he tall or short?
Slim or stocky?
Fair or bronzed?
Pallid or rugged?
Dull or talented?
I know not if he be tall or short,
but his breath reaches to the treetops and beyond.
I cannot tell if he be slim or stocky,
but his influence expands many thousands of miles.
He may be fair or bronzed—who knows?
All I know is that he has come to the Sunshine State.
You and I may guess alike whether he be pallid or rugged,
yet he’s been stirring here for hours now, with no apparent need of rest.
Dull or talented? You tell me: While single-handedly chasing Summer
out of town, he’s been playing non-stop music on my wind chimes.
Copyright © 2020 Abigail Gronway – All Rights Reserved
Winter. It’s here.
Yes, even in sunny NW Florida we have to protect our pipes against freezing in the overnight chill. The main difference between here and where I used to live in Virginia is that here the air warms up again during the day, sometimes so warm that we forget it’s winter—just so long as we’re back inside before dark!
It feels so good to be writing again! Yes, a few scheduled short poems have been published to my site in recent weeks, but the reality is I’ve been on yet another hiatus. This time my absence is due to a building project. When we lived in Florida, my husband and I built a shed which he was to use as his Man Cave. The day we filled it with his things and brought my things into the two-car garage from the storage unit, we got our orders to transfer from Virginia down to NW Florida, so he never got to enjoy that shed.
Now four years later, we’ve hired someone else to build a shed, and this time it’s for me. I’ll tell all about it soon on my piano art site, Encore! Old Pianos with a New Song. The shed was delivered a couple weeks ago. Before it came, there were certain things we had to do to prepare for its arrival. And now that it’s here, there’s ever so much more work to be done in order to set it up for use as a studio/workshop. And the orders haven’t stopped coming in, so every day my time is divided between filling orders, working in the studio/workshop, and taking care of my family. Sadly, this hasn’t left any time for writing—and very little time for me. This poor girl needs a massage in a bad way. But I digress.
Anyway, last night, while customizing yet another order, I listened to the sweet dissonance of the chimes, saw the freeze warning on the weather forecast, and decided to write a poem about Old Man Winter. Setting aside my work, I allowed the music of the chimes to lull me to sleep, and it was still there when I awoke this morning. So was the desire to write this poem. I’m caught up with my orders, and everything else can wait. So, my reading and writing friends, here I am. Thank you for being here with me.
a form made popular by Walt Whitman, Ezra Pound, and T.S. Elliot, which is free of traditional rules of verse (fixed meter and rhyme). Line breaks are used deliberately to exploit a natural pause or create suspense. This is NOT prose, and while it does not contain meter or end rhyme, it is often rhythmical in its own right, and flows with the aid of internal rhyme, alliteration, assonance, consonance, repetition of words and phrases, etc.