Ugly Weather / Winter Room

“When you’ve got nothing

you’ve got nothing to lose”


Life is a dance

in an empty pair of shoes

while the memories in

the gas fed room

loom and crowd and zoom.


The universe is collapsing.

Photographs flap and float about.

All the geese are frozen in the pond.

Al the fish breathless, quiet on the lawn.

The wind whistles through the window’s clear cracks.

You dream an axe handle dreaming of the axe.


Mixing all

all wide eyed sleep

the tension of the saw

destroying more

while outside sad snow falls.

You understand

there is,

only nothing you can keep.



Category: Poems 2 comments »

2 Responses to “Ugly Weather / Winter Room”

  1. ellen

    Wonderful poem, David.

    I find the first two stanzas especially powerful- I don’t have a favorite line or image (or maybe I have several), but I especially like how it ends with “you dream an axe handle dreaming of the axe” … in fact, I could write that word for word without looking back, and I almost always make little mistakes when doing that.

    I’m not sure why the third stanza doesn’t add more for me… actually, I do know. It’s the line, “You understand there is, only nothing you can keep.” I think I like it better when poems don’t have a stated conclusion? Or maybe I just don’t believe the conclusion? Because we do keep the love we feel. I realized that when I was watching my father at the end of his life, his feelings of love burning through his eyes. No mistaking it. That’s what he wanted me to know, the only thing of substance at the end. It doesn’t go away, it gets brighter and more important. Everything.

    Nothing else, even the death itself, is very important. Love, felt love, is everything.

    But what I like most about the poem or relate to most in the poem isn’t so important either. I like the poem very much.

  2. George

    A prompt image crossed my mind reading this poem. A suicide.
    But I agree with Ellen, a powerful (for me also freezing) poem.

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