by Iona Cowley
The snow came over the night, as we thought it would. Slowly white piled up as duplicate of all, inching its way upward, cruel and faded shadow’s opposition. The sky was unusually light, no doubt the work of the millions of tiny crystals that were diffusing the neon street lamps as they tumbled ever downwards. Silence reigned. Already there are footsteps marking the snow, no doubt the work of commuters rushing home towards the station. They seem so harsh now, like tattoos, like scars, but no doubt the snow will have covered them by tomorrow, hushed their violence, muffled their shouting. She is so silent, yet so loud, so clear. So all-encompassing. She is all.
She drifts down on our houses with such grace, a white angel that envelopes us all in her kind embrace. Don’t cry, she says, don’t worry. Hush, hush now, silly children. And she soothes us all to sleep.
Tomorrow, Sun will come and burn her all away. Vengeful and mean, he burns and burns until there’s nothing left, and even then he burns still more. Cruel Sun. Or maybe she will triumph. Her victories are as fleeting as her comfort, her voice as soft as it is strong. Her victories are always tainted with the knowledge of failure, of death. She knows as soon as she has won one day, she is one day closer to burning.
But she doesn’t care. She lives to live, not to continue living. She knows better. She allows the luxury of death for she understands it as luxury.
Tonight though, she is everywhere and everything and everyone. And she breathes. And she lives.