I was on vacation in Florida last weekend–what a wonderful warm break from the bitterly cold northwest. While there I combined a bit of business with pleasure, researching the arts in the community for poets, writers, & musicians. I found a few, but not nearly as many as seem to spring up from the harsh locked-in, sedentary world of winter we have here. And I wondered, do you need the bad weather to slow you down enough to finish your artistic callings? This poem rather sums up my thoughts…
The Poetry of Bad Weather
Someone had propped a skateboard
by the door of the classroom,
to make quick his escape, come the bell.
For it was February in Florida,
the air of instruction thick with tanning butter.
Why, my students wondered,
did the great dead poets all live north of us?
Was there nothing to do all winter there
but pine for better weather?
Had we a window, the class could keep an eye
on the clock and yet watch the wild plum
nod with the absent grace of the young.
We could study the showy scatter of petals.
We could, for want of a better word, call it “snowy.”
The room filled with stillness, flake by flake.
Only the dull roar of air forced to spend its life indoors
could be heard. Not even the songbird
of a cell phone chirped. Go home,
I wanted to tell the horse on the page.
You know the way, even in snow
gone blue with cold.