There are mornings that are just perfect, and how lovely that this one started out my Valentine’s Day. I went out to look at the moon, and there was this Canada goose gliding along, and the deer family was standing in the foreground, out of the photo. We all just stopped everything we were doing and stood together in the silence, under the moon glow, and the pink light reflected in the water. Happy Valentine’s Day to us all, as Winter feels like it is slowly breaking up. Light is flowing through the veins of the feathery branches on the willow trees and they are turning yellow. There was a brand new bird on my run this morning–the little tiny guy who always sits on top of a bare tree, and sings the longest and sweetest little trilling song. I didn’t expect him until the first of March.
We are still one solid block of ice. Temperatures get above freezing in the daytime, and the sunshine works away on melting the feet of snow everywhere, but the low teens at night refreeze it anew. Like the chill in my bones by this time of the year, we will slowly thaw. In the meantime, how lucky am I to have a Valentine in my house who keeps me warm.
by Barbara Crooker
Sugar maples, little fires in the trees, every blazing gradation
of orange to red, and this makes me think of you, the way
you press the long length of your body against me, the heat
seeping through flannel, my own private furnace.
If only hands and feet had a color, it would be blue.
From November until May, I cannot get warm.
Even my bones have cores of ice. But you
are a house on fire, an internal combustion system,
Sriracha sauce/ jalapeño poppers/Thai curry. I stay up
late, read until you’re asleep, so I can slip my icy feet,
frozen toes, under the smoldering log of your torso.
Even in the dark, you radiate. I am a cold front, a polar low
coming down from the arctic. And you, why you,
you’re the sun.