Winter again, sweeping the summit,
wetter than later, echoing in a hush.
The large crow hawking yesterday
is nowhere in sight. It is six a.m.
I plug in the small tree, lights
backlit against frozen windows.
It seems a burning bush in
all this whiteness. I like this hour
when the ground is still—void
of scent, no bland granite or spicy moss.
I am alone—no smoke from chimneys,
no one walking to the lake.
It is a protected contemplation,
a celestial silence that will soon be
interrupted when the sun re-asserts
itself and grabs all the glory.
Then, trees release white discs: springing
catapults, a hundred jittery fingers.
The earth warms, heat trickles
down eaves, soaking wood fences.
Limbs rise in a yawn,
and black asphalt steams gray
and hissy through melting snow,
destroying all my white silence.
Jeanine Stevens was raised in