Poetry: “Cold Passion” by Paul Cameron Brown

Reading. Writing. Blogging. Literature. Winter.

It was around this time last year that all hope was lost. I was up to my chin in the final semester of my teaching program and well over 40 hours a week at my “residency,” which was just a full-time teaching job. With that much stress, it’s hard to acknowledge the beauty in winter.

In spite of that, it’s very dark this time of year I’ve noticed; and it’s quiet. My classroom faces the east, so the sun comes up for a short time and is nearly gone by the time I leave for the day. I guess it’s hard to acknowledge the beauty when you’re stressed, but it’s also hard to acknowledge the beauty when you are in it, because it’s gone in a blink. Winter is only pretty to the snow monsters and snowmen, and maybe those who travel by night.

Today I’m sharing the poem “Cold Passion” by Paul Cameron Brown, as it serves up a good portion of winter detail and figurative expression. I happen to like the lines, “Starry night. With halos / about the moon, pale / and languid, big as crimson, / far as wind driven flax.” These lines balance the beauty of winter for me–“halos,” “pale,” and “wind driven flax” all remind me of ghostly skies above desolation, and that imagery has that gothic charm I love so much.

Enjoy today’s poem. It’s cold and quiet, but there is some beauty in it, too.

Cold Passion” by Paul Cameron Brown

     Some dead undid undid their bushy jaws,
            and bags of blood let out their flies.. .
                        ? Dylan Thomas

        The land is barren
        wears straw wisps
        as an unkempt man
        might razor stubble.

        The land is dry, a faded yellow
        in its barrenness.
        A sky broods from afar,
        a stalactite sun accounts merely a jot
        above that thin road into despair.

        Grass lies everywhere dead,
        faded tongues above an
        earth afflicted with scleroderma,
        deadliest of skin disturbances,
        forerunner of deeper pestilence.

        An erasing wind whips the fields
        further into bereavement;
        turns tiny bits of chaff to pursue themselves
        in a mad St. Vitus dance
        of cold passion.

        Starry night. With halos
        about the moon, pale and languid, big as crimson,
        far as wind driven flax.

        The orange pallor, pale
        with liquid swoon and ability
        to churn itself about the
        night sky or flood in endless
        beams our poorer spectacle below.

Works Cited

Brown, Paul Cameron. “Public Domain Poetry – Cold Passion by Paul Cameron.” International Pty., https://www.public-domain-poetry.com/paul-cameron-brown/cold-passion-35539. Accessed 19 Jan. 2022.