On a day of bone-cracking cold,
with the sun caught in a slough of blue
like a wide-mouth bass suspended
in the depths of a frozen pond,
the dog snuffled the snow
with incredulity, boggled by the shock
to canine reason that made the need
to pee recede, forgotten,
while in pink-cheeked impatience,
I wondered how long before I froze
where I stood and became a
hitching post tied to a dog
who might not go until Spring.
Then I heard the chip chip chip
of a cardinal as it leapt from ground
to branch and branch to ground
within the shelter of a holly,
and turning, saw the leaves shiver
with the movement and shed
their white coat which fell soft
and slow and seemed like melting,
yet beneath, the ground was dry.
Moses came to mind, polished
smooth from millenia of retelling
how a bush burned without burning
and the frosty heart of Pharaoh broke.
Tethered to my frittering dog,
I put off my shoes, just in case.
© dana hughes 1.30.14