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JANUARY 2009

Sonnet on winter

Last year, the weather changed on Boxing Day,

A warning that the bright New Year might bring

A hard January. Cold enough to flay

Skin from bones. Winter’s teeth and winter’s sting,

Turned rain to bitter sleet. Then flakes of snow

Coloured the world pristine in shades of white

And silver. Lakes froze, their waters below

Zero for days. Days indistinct from night.

One night, my cat brought in a frozen wren,

Feathers still fluffed against the cruel cold.

I touched its body with regret and then,

I turned away, because if truth were told

I love the days when the whole world is still

Beneath the clarity of winter’s chill.