Feb 17

Flower-pressed snowman

There was no time to think,
the sun was searching for something to kill
so I grabbed my snowman by his scarf
and dragged him to the single shadow
shaded from the midday sun by the pointed roof
and we sat
on the last island of winter.
I told him to hold on (he was getting all mushy)
and I pulled my journal out of my coat pocket.
The shadow was folding back and the sun smiled wider.
I felt warmth on my nose.
I put my journal down on the snow
and the snowman wobbled as he lay down on a blank page
and then, as I crossed my shaking fingers,
I flower-pressed my snowman between the pages.
Just in time, the sun found me hiding there
and blinded me with yellow lips and white teeth,
but I was already running up the steps and into the house.
When I finally sat down on the edge of my bed
I couldn't bring myself to open the book,
and stuffed it into a drawer.

It was midnight when it awoke me,
the sickening sound of my snowman, 
dripping through a hole in the desk. 
I turned on the light and there he was,
running down the desk leg and gathering between the floorboards.
With unblinking eyes, I opened the drawer and found my journal.
It was with shaking hands I had closed it, and it was
with shaking hands, that again I opened it. 
I did not find my snowman,
only wrinkled pages falling out of the binding,
and my socks were wet as I stood on the carpet
soaked with my snowman. 
I laid the journal on the desk and slipped back into bed,
my cold socks a wordless reminder:
I had not saved him.