Moving In Winter

Their life, collapsed like unplayed cards,
is carried piecemeal through the snow;
Headboard and footboard now, the bed
where she has lain desiring him
where overhead his sleep will build
its canopy to smother her once more;
their table, by four elbows worn
evening after evening while the wax runs down;
mirrors grey with reflecting them,
bureaus coffining from the cold
things that can shuffle in a drawer,
carpets rolled up around those echoes
which, shaken out, take wing and breed
new altercations, the old silences.

by Adrienne Rich

Comments (1)

I have been a Adrienne Rich convert for many years. I have not kept up with my studies due to the general living of life, but I often read my older volumes of her work. I loved this poem. I had never seen or read it before. This is, as far as I am concerned, an incredible poem. I have no idea what time of in her career this poem represents. but I've always rather liked a textual context and criticism for poetry anyway. Her imagery is classic Rich (damn, she's good) . (She's REALLY good) Her surgeon-like excision of absolutey any non-relevant meaning of her words. She drives that imagery home with master strokes of the beat of her syntax. I think she's an excellent poet. Chris Skelton