College of Southern Maryland
Division of Languages and Literature
8730 Mitchell Rd.
PO Box 910
La Plata, MD 20646-0910
Poem by Rachel Heinhorst
This has been a winter
with few whispers of spring,
I mention to my father
when I call to check his need of anything
for the coming of the newest snow.
The freezing days keep
our neighborhood ponds frozen,
so I don’t worry about my son
discovering a forbidden bravery,
a bravery my childhood winters gave
when we’d gather at the lake on snow days:
one foot, push, the other foot, stand,
and if water finds its way atop the ice,
two steps back.
This winter of memories has given
time with my daughter in her bedroom,
finding long and thick socks.
I gather and stretch them over her toes and ankles
while she suggests painting her room
might be something we can do after snow angels.
Come evening, there is peace beneath the couch blankets
just as there is peace beneath the snow covered ground
where spring waits patiently, like us,
embraced by winter’s gifts.