How We Winter

Keeping our eyes focused upon

trees that have turned on 
their other street-signal colors,
that have passed green for go,
gone deep

into slow, caution,

stop. Noting

that it’s not far now
to no color at all on those limbs,
save for here and there
an odd shot of rust 
that will not fall. Noting

that it’s cooling at night, though
not quite enough for the furnace;
thermostats are yet untouched, although
the batteries
have been checked.

We’re bracing for car care,
yard care, window sealing,
pulling out layers of clothes
and warner bed linens…now and then

watching the faces of those
who panhandle 
on nearby streets,
mouths tight
upon cheap cigarettes
cupped in still bare,
sun brown hands;

blessing them now and then
with thin coins and thinner bills
handed out the car window
before driving away.

This is how we winter,
how we warm ourselves.

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About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

One response to “How We Winter

  • Eileen

    Good one. Thanks. Woke up during last night thinking about my research into what can be done for the homeless in our town. Discouraging so far and I thought of just giving it up and hoping someone younger, smarter and more qualified would step up to the plate. You made me realize those younger, smarter and more qualified are up to their ears in projects for survival of their current life style. Old ladies may be the best bet for getting something going.

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