Of December

You start, for me, with curved red ribbon and candles

and darkness- a cold, bitter night, made

sweeter with life

holding on.


You end with champagne and hats, horns and music,

sometimes, fireworks-

and if we’re premature,

a kiss.


In between, it’s expectation and the delight of a

perfectly chosen gift- the taste, the

sound, the smell of blessings,

even small.


The magic of the northern lights and snow (for me),

trees and children with questions

I have patience

to answer.


The poor eating a few more meals and travelers

taken in more easily, gladly maybe,

the precedent heavily

in mind.


Yours is the crispness of life, different and quiet

but still there- awaiting the notice of

a passing eye simply, the

sly patience

of truth.



The way seems perfectly clear,
Laid out in front of me
And marked
And easy- except for the big trucks.
Those impersonal behemoths
Scatter snow as they roar past,
Blinding and harsh.

Now, in this little moment,
It’s not so clear,
Not marked, not easy-
Only white and loud.
Can I remember the path I just saw
For the instant it takes them to pass-
And stay on the road?

I wonder, and grip tighter,
Mind going to that place where
Everyone wears black and says
Nice things about me.
The seconds pass and I remain
On course, not dead,
But slightly less alive than my fears
For a moment longer.


Eyes- A Poem for the New Year

Not rotted or frozen, but alive,

sleepily living despite the layer of snow.

Something there,



and eyes are blind to it- deny it even,

and live the desperation, hating that there is no green,

refusing to look at the evidence under the snow.

The sages know.

They know white contains green in its spectrum,

and theirs are the faces that smile in the cold

with the pleasant secret of knowing that there is no secret-

only eyes that choose to see wonder,

that love to look for green,

especially in a cold, white world.

~D Gregory Smith


White and blue and gray
is my part of the planet
moving towards solstice.
the white is so bright it hurts
and the blue so cold it burns.
The gray is just gray
especially on the day
that the weather turns
and seems to look backwards.
Am I the only one to notice
and quickly retreat,
not wishing to depress myself
for weeks at a time-
the time the gray
can last on my part of the planet?
Or do we all notice and differ
in degrees of hurt and burn and gray?
It must be that way
or all would suffer
the same sentence-
never leaving the house or,
in the end,
never seeing or feeling the
competence of the neighbor,
the husband, the friend
through the gray of the day
on our part of the planet.