Sunrise at 15 Degrees Below Zero

The heart of the Sun beats as ardently as ever
though the Earth plays the coy coquette
averting her face from the intensity
of his smoldering gaze
lingering for months in a sidelong glance
as she slowly turns in her measured pace
and we
perched upon her cold shoulder
of 45 degrees north
a halfway house of latitude
midway between equator and northern pole
the temperate zone, presumably
despite our intemperate extremes
alternating torrid and frigid
the tropics and the arctic
visit us in their seasons
but never, it seems, together
the arctic now pays its respects
cold rushes in from northern reaches
storied land of the midnight sun
now the land of the midday stars
what a sequenced spectacle
to watch the stars wheel
endlessly across the velvet sky
hour after hour
night after unending night
as the earth pirouettes
beneath one’s feet
Ursa Major and Ursa Minor
chase each other’s tails
around and around the star of the north
polar bears, indeed
but here
the wind rises with the Sun
and whale sounds erupt
from beneath the frozen lake
as the waters beat against the ice
breath condenses upon eyelashes
ice crystals dangle before ones eyes
illuminated by the sun in perfect orbs
like Christmas ornaments not yet put away
a sprig of Arbor Vitae lies upon the path
tree of life, messenger of life ever green


This calls to mind one of my favorite things to say, but it’s so quaint I can only say it once a year, so here goes:
Glove-a-lees are lovely
but I’m smitten by mittens

21 thoughts on “Sunrise at 15 Degrees Below Zero

    • Thank you, Lori! Yes, I rather got a kick out of my frosty eyelashes….I stopped in a coffee shop on my walk home from the lake – you should have heard the gasps from the other patrons when I came in the door. They practically cheered me for braving the cold. 🙂

  1. Beautiful words, Cnawan and lovely photos. Your eyelashes are all snowy! Very Dr. Zhivago-esque.

    • Thank you, Mary – I think! 🙂 You’re the 2nd person to mention Dr. Zhivago – I better go look at some pictures to see who I’m being compared to!

  2. Delightful! Our winter so far has been markedly different from the series of blizzards that started one year ago today, which was nicknamed “snowpocalypse” and the unrelenting frigid temps. It has been single digit wind chill lately here in the Northeast, but today many towns are hitting 50!

    • Thank you, glad you liked it! We’ve been bouncing around between unseasonably warm to below zero temps and are in something of a snow drought so far this winter. Not very conducive to winter sports!

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