Yes, nothing as fine as snow sifts down on our mountains.
At least, not merely for our recreation or pleasure.
Frost, when it blisters those rare, chilled nights
at the end of the year, can be very beautiful—
for several incandescent hours, it outlines with silvery-green
the heads of cabbages that farmers thereafter must send
to the sorrow of composting bins.

A resinous musk once clothed the trees that you call
evergreen— now they wear something more stark,
more bitter. One morning not so long ago our children
woke from sleep to find the ashes of a faraway volcano
on their lashes. We marveled even more thereafter
at the precision of fate, at the impossibility of explaining
what we’d always lived with as mystery.

Only a few elders remain who know the patterns
for our rivers’ undulating forms. They can tap them
into your skin— say, on your shoulders, across
your collarbone— with only the soot
gathered by history’s ghosts. When you fall
back into the dust, the stones might remember
for you what you’ve forgotten.



In response to Via Negativa: Beautification.

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