I race down the white blanketed valley,
Picking up speed as I disturb
The resting crystals,
Stirring them into a feisty frosty dance.
The sun raises his sleepy head,
Then shivers and pulls up the covers.
Not today, he thinks...Maybe tomorrow.
I laugh at his fear of me.
My icy tendrils caress the bare branches
Of gnarled trees, twigs reaching like fingers.
I search for leaves, stubborn stragglers,
But there are none.
The water in the small winding river
Chuckles merrily at my failure,
So I dip close to him and whisper.
His surface freezes in horror.
I laugh wildly as I climb
Out of the empty valley.
The naked trees bend low,
Trembling under my icy onslaught.
My laughter dies as I reach
The top of the frozen ridge.
I halfheartedly tease the evergreens
As I wander along a well worn path.
Hinges squealing in protest, I push
Through a faded wooden gate into the back yard
Of a small house, rattling loose shutters
And swirling around the smokeless chimney.
In the front yard
A woman in black s