Poems & Essays

19 Aug


General/Column No Response

—for Clara

your first home was inside of me
during Snowpocalypse twenty-twelve.
our apartment in Olympia
lost power twice during that season
and snow days drifted high at June’s end
teaching on pause and tech week skipped
A Midsummer’s Night Dream stuck
in winter.

your father and I alternated
between snuggly couch movie binging
and child-like wonderland advent’ring.
the most snow either of us had seen
at our homes. we layered in clothing
jeans on jeans, shirt on shirt on shirt on
pea coat, miscellaneous wardrobe
scroungings doubleting us snow tourists
topping our look with gloves, hat, camera.

owl print lady rain boots shared with him
sink deep like my pastel plaid ones
march in exaggerated slo-mo
laughing lift leg from hip, then crash down
again, fresh powder compressed with old
knee-deep we trudge merrily along.

four blocks to capital mall goes slow.
city shutdown, snow silencing six
lanes of traffic, intersection still,
magically eerie we stand there
in the center we hold our breaths
to hear nothing, then just echoing
crunch of a willow goldfinch crossing
to yonder vacant Olive Garden.

survey vast blanket ahead of us
look back at our tracks, indentations
dotting perfection, much like a bird
on stilt-like chopsticks waltzing across
an enormous bowl of sticky rice.

twelve weeks with you, I’m tir’d but happy—
we work our way back home, uphill, chilled
go in while he stays out to create
life-sized snow people, snowfie portraits
of snow-us, with you, windowed inside
middle ball of snow-lady, tiny
snow-baby, size of a clementine,
complete with stick umbilical cord
connecting to small snow-placenta
(providing snow-nutrients, of course).

perchance this is how our neighbors learned,
and local faeries too (if they are),
you exist, our frozen announcement.

Joann Renee Boswell is a teacher, mother, photographer and poet currently living in Camas, WA with her spouse and three children. Joann loves rainy days filled with coffee, books, handholding, moody music and sci-fi shows. She’s been published in Untold Volumes, Voices of Eve and Western Friend. Joann’s first book of poetry is forthcoming from Fernwood Press in May 2020.

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