White Sky at Dawn
Published February 22, 2009
When I awoke in the pre-dawn hours ready to go see the sunrise, I peered into the darkness from the balcony of my room at Yosemite Lodge. It was obvious that the snow storm was still in full force and likely to be around for the whole day. So I took a blanket out to a chair on the balcony and marveled at the beauty of falling snow. My balcony overlooked Cook’s Meadow in Yosemite Valley.
To SIT IN this chair and wonder where is endlessness
Born, where does it go, how close has it come; and to see
The snow coming down, the flakes enlarging whatever they touch,
Changing shapes until no shape remains. In their descent
They are like stars overtaken by light, or like thoughts
That drift before the long, blank window facing the future,
Withering, whirling, continuing down, finally away
From the clear panes into the place where nothing will do,
Where nothing is needed or said because it is already known.
And when it is over, and the deep, unspeakable reaches of white
Melt into memory, how will the warmth of the fire,
So long in coming, keep us from mourning the loss?
— excerpt from A Suite of Apearances, by Mark Strand.