Beatitude by Sam Barbee



It is winter. It is cold.
Meek sky offers no color.
Hardwood skeletons assemble
along the treeline. Roots knuckle up
through blizzard’s encumbrance, grasping at sunrise.

Rhododendrons sag,
iced-over leaves weighted like
bats roosting through chill’s clutch.
Snow frosts the cedars’ dulled-blue berries
and skulks backside shadows as along dark edges of the moon.

I scuff out among other tracks
across frost to seize prioritized news.
Daffodils sprout behind liriope, fractures
splitting freeze, peaceful blessings to scatter
any frost, virtuous blooms declaring along the garden’s brink.

Green shoots shame wisdom of the wise
with weakness stronger than human strengths.
Seedlings rise to thwart winter, and that mourning
bred in kneaded darkness. They reward the plot where
we have rooted mercies to console us before our fragile petals shine.

Frozen meadowland, pitched with grass,
rams jostle and rejoice with ewes on hills,
primed for spring’s shear—some for slaughter—
in the season when burnt offerings abate, and thaw
reveals bruises sealed under hoarfrost. After the winter. After the cold.

Sam Barbee
Sam Barbee’s poems appeared in Crucible, Asheville Poetry Review, The Southern Poetry Anthology VII: North Carolina, Main Street Rag, Iodine, and Pembroke Magazine, among others; plus on-line journals Vox Poetica, Pyrokinection, and The Blue Hour. His is a Pushcart Nominee. His second collection, That Rain We Needed (Press 53), was published in April of 2016.

Featured image: Daffodils in the Snow by Fr. Ted Bobosh. CC license.

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