One Snowy Day in South Porcupine, Ontario, 1975

One Snowy Day in South Porcupine, Ontario, 1975

Here is a poem I recently wrote in January. I hope you will enjoy it. It’s called “One Snowy Day in South Porcupine, Ontario, 1975”

In the time when eyelashes turned white in the cold
I cross country skied most winter days.
The babysitter arrived just after three and
stayed till after 4:15 when night began to fall.
In colorful breathable light layers of clothes
I skied across the road and field into the woods
that stretched all the way up to James Bay.

On this particular early spring day I was dressed —
ready and waiting to go at three.
I’d argued with our five year old about property rights.
Should she share toys with her brother?
Weary – I felt the winter’s length and then
hit the woods flying so fast I failed to notice
that snow was beginning to fall.

When I looked behind me and saw
my tracks covered with snow
I knew I was lost.
The light was slant as
I looked for trees I knew
and then in disappointment
kept on moving

Circling — passing the same trees again and again —
my vision shifted. I remembered that we are all headed towards
a spacious place of light. All my hope
sprang up high and deep and wide. After that
I heard the sounds of Finnish boys talking and laughing.
I turned and skied towards them — laughing myself and
crying at the same time.

I’d bought my Finnish skis at
Mr. Kari’s General Store.
I’d drunk cocoa in the family living room
as I tried on my skis and selected ski poles.
The town was small and we took care of each other.
That snowy spring day in South Porcupine was one of
many times In my life when I have been both lost and found.