What is More Beautiful Than Winter – by Samuel Ward Swauger

What is More Beautiful Than Winter
In Memory of Tammy

and water glinting on your boots?
That’s what I love about the snow
to hear the soft warble of songbirds
sloshing around below my shoes for
months after they’ve all flown south.

If you stand still and quiet, then
you’ll be painted into the night sky,
the hums of long dead crickets will
echo on in twigs sailing the winds.

The trees are braver than us both
because they go on when their fruits rot.
It’s not intuitive to hold out so long.
How do they breathe into the blue clouds,
their roots smothered under cold dust?

I’m glad that the fruit is underfoot,
glad for as long as I can listen
to the incredibly distant rustle of
your memory in wine-red leaves.

Samuel Ward Swauger is a poet from Baltimore, MD. His writing appears in Tilde, Third Wednesday, and Ghost City Review , among other publications like The Charleston Anvil. He's 20, his favorite color is orange, and he's a big fan of Frank O'Hara's Lunch Poems. His Twitter is @samuelswauger.

Statement by Featured Artist, Shelley Thomas: My mind fills with scenes of frozen lakes and ice-crusted branches. I see leaves frozen in ponds. A skin of ice forming over a puddle. I think of things held down, things underneath, underfoot. How memory is like ice. It preserves what’s lost. There is comfort in that. Things out of reach, are never really quite gone. Like branches locked in ice.
Art: “Slow Dissolve of March Chandeliers,” 2018 (Lake Ontario, Canada)