LS (2/11/1943 / Mingo Junction, Ohio)

Winter Morning

Fresh snow on the ground
beneath the bird feeders
tilting in the wind
soft light before dawn.

The silence of clocks ticking
the refrigerator’s hum
the furnace clicks on
the billowing of flames.

Yesterday I stood in line
at the social security office
staring down at the number
I held in my hand.

All that long afternoon
my grandson sat beside me
on the family room couch
both of us sleepy with colds.

My wife sleeps now
in the darkened bedroom
too loving to infect
with my longing.

A wind up the chimney
pulls at the fireplace.
I watch and listen
without words.

Larry Smith

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