The Thaw

Remember the way it

Felt in your lungs that winter?

The harshness of it all

As you took in the frozen air?

Remember how it

Would tighten up your throat

As you gasped it down, but

Once it was down it stopped feeling

So cold

And separate?

Remember the taste of my mouth

As I let my thoughts

Go tumbling into yours?

They were thoughts I couldn’t say out loud

But thoughts that I still loved to think

And still do love to think.

Yes, it was a good winter,

One full of ice crystals that would

Form on the windows overnight,

Blocking out the world beyond

With lacey patterns and fractured light.

It was the winter when Reality died

And was buried under four feet

Of powdery snow that looked

Like it should be soft and billowy

But, like all snow, was not.

We didn’t go out there much.

We forgot about Reality for a while.

I would pour us each a glass of

Cheap red wine and we would sip

And sip until the stars outside

Would show up on our ceiling

And the fire in the fireplace

Began to doze off.

But when the snow began to melt

We found it out there, revived,

Lying in a puddle of March slush,

Taking deep, slow breaths of cool air,

Sucking on our dreams like a newborn.

– Jenna Bernstein

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