Note: I first wrote this poem many years ago. I haven’t been able to find a written copy, but it has stayed in my memory, and this winter has certainly evoked it time and again. I suppose this is a re-written version, for in places I’ve made changes. Some are new and conscious, while others reflect the influence of years and the fragility of the mind.
A fire that is banked against the night
Will last, endure to meet the coming day
And with its own greet dawn’s pale gleaming light
In muted soft and sable rust display.
They covet fire to chase away the chill
Who rise amidst the rebirth of the sun,
Whose blazing beams ignite the pearly hill
While warming nothing but lands far beyond
The realm of snow where we have stirred the hearth
Beneath a kettle on an iron swing.
Its whistle trills its challenge to the dark,
The embers lift their burning heads to sing
The song they’ve sung from sunset until morn
While we in silence watch the new logs burn.