On Shovelling (a winter sonnet)

With apologies to Milton.

When I consider how my morns are spent,
Or half my days, in this world, dark and wide,
With that snow shovel, frozen to my hide,
That seems so useless, though its blade is bent
To scrape so well the sidewalk, and present
The bare concrete (lest postman, coming, chide,
“I almost slipped; indeed, I could have died!”),
I mutter oaths; but Patience to prevent
That murmur, soon replies, “Snow doth not need
Either man’s shovel or his salt; who best
Scrapes clear his walk, to Snow is naught; its state
Is frozen. Thousands at its bidding speed
To plough and scrape and shovel without rest;
But it will melt if you just stand and wait.”

The photo: Snow, of course.

Permanent link to this article: https://edwardwillett.com/2011/01/on-shovelling-a-winter-sonnet/

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