The First Cold Day of the Year

the first cold day of the year
brings a bite to the skin
eyes not yet ready to water
I stand waiting for the bus
Watching the sun rise
bringing limited warmth
as I think of the apartment
I left it warm and closed up
Ready and secure for
the first cold day of the year

I walk along the street
Cars bringing a biting wind
whipping past me, hands in pockets
I grab a scarf out of my bag
and wrap it around my icy neck
My ears are starting to feel bit
The wind comes and goes
as the air is still and cold
I think of the warm bus ride
The first cold day of the year

Sitting in the seat, sun on my ear
I think of the hat I should have worn
I am crumpled in the tight spot
not worried about being huddled
The air outside is shaking the leaves
off of their safe homes on the trees
I get up to depart at my stop
Standing at the door I look
outside at the people shivering
the first cold day of the year

The walk to work is long
But I don’t know it for the chill
I walk faster for the warmth
but the only thing cold
won’t get warm by walking
My hands are in my pockets
I think of my classroom
It will get warm, and stay
as the kids are active on
the first cold day of the year

the office is cold, few people,
the windows are closed tight
yesterday they weren’t
Today the air brings the chill inside
insulation does little to warm
as the building is opened
and the chill of night lingers
the halls will stay cold
the classrooms getting warm
the first cold day of the year

I teach with energy
the cold morning did much
to invigorate me for the day
and I walk fast from
my office to my classroom
from classroom to lunch room
and back to my office
to keep in the warm places
Like everyone else on
the first cold day of the year

I will walk to the bus stop,
waiting in the biting fall air
November not yet here
October barely half done
I will stand and shift
trying to shake off the cold
trying to find that warm spot
inside of me or in the open air
as it reminds me that it’s
the first cold day of the year

When I get home I will stand
outside for a moment too long
letting the chill get into my soul
and the life and excitement
that comes with the season
as sleep and hibernation
are just as real and I will choose
to keep the cold within me
to keep me walking fast on
the first cold day of the year

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