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About the Poem

The gasping beauty of snowstorms was inlaid on my child-heart by a mother who loved them too. All my life, snow and wind will bring me intense joy, through this gift she gave me.

Nor'Easter of 1956

Five years old, standing frozen in the field,
The winter of 1956, breathlessly listening.
Gray-white skies in an upside-down cup,
Completely over my little world,
Closed down to the flat farmed earth.

The howling came from the north, constant, disturbing.
Beyond the brown acres of last summer’s wheatfields,
Where I had crawled, itching, through the gold.
Beyond the barn, beyond the chicken-house,
Crying eerily in a low, continuous moan -
A persevering, sorrowful, keening sky-sob.

Anxious, I searched the horizon for the
Wounded wailing creature it must be,
And saw nothing but the chill heavens.
Those gray-white clouds settled close,
Surrounding me on all sides, meeting the ground.

On and on it went until I ran to the house,
Asking mamma what that noise was.
And she explained about Nor’Easters.
The wind, she said, bringing a blizzard.

Little blonde girl gazing upward
In the field again, searching, unable
To fathom how the wind would have
A voice like a lost person in the wilderness.
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© 1999 Rosemary J. Gwaltney Please respect the rights of the author and Passions in Poetry. If you would like to use this poem on your own web page, please contact the Author. Thank you.
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