shadow

If You Are in Boston After the First Snow

Stop and wait for the moon to sculpt fire hydrants

to statues of frost. Everyone will be marooned;

everything will appear to have the same weight

when covered. It is the regularity, the sameness,

the smoothness that does it. Any solid color will

do: brown earth under the bent man shoveling

in front of his house on Beacon Street, black wool

coating a child outside Faneuil Hall, white clouds

embracing another walking in Cambridge past

2 Farrar Street. Purple gloves mask her face. Snow

makes visible what you would not ordinarily notice.

What must be a car by Longfellow's House could be

a tank with gun turrets removed or an elephant kneeling

for its master to mount. If a rag of smoke wraps

your eyes, inhale it, then open your mouth to catch

snowflakes, stars that freeze, beating on your tongue.

of 5 stories this month > Get unlimited stories
You've read 5 of 5 free stories

Only $1 for your first month.

Get unlimited Monitor journalism.