Snow Day

By Rick Joines

December 26, 2022

Snow Day

At least an inch, with an underlayer of ice, a glaze of tiny beads, encrusted light. Strange and rare here, so everyone stays home. No school. A few cars creep by, spin sideways into the intersection. The kettle dings. Coffee burbles in the filter, steams in its pot. Across the street, the little girl and her brother, only a bit older, step out. Side by side, for balance. They bend to touch frozen blades of grass, leaves, pine cones, needles, the peach tree’s bare stems. She wears a purple parka, fake fur around the collar, and pants of a rosy dark pink. When she remembers, someday, will she remember purple and rose, white and cold? The boy presses a mittened palm against the side of the car, slides down the driveway, comes back around to the hood. He gathers snow, scoops and scoops. He brings this mound to his face and smells. Pulls his head back, looks, and smells again. Of what does it smell? Of snow, of snow. He lets it go, brushes it all away. Coldness glitters, everywhere. Each step leaves a trace, makes a sound. They listen and compare. They can see exactly how far into the yard they have come. It is far enough. They turn and retrace. Snow falls, sticks, melts. Makes memories, our own and not our own. They last a little longer.


Rick Joines lives in Denton, Texas, where he teaches literature and writing. He has poems forthcoming in The Wallace Stevens Journal.


Photo by London Nanzhi courtesy of Unsplash

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