First Snow

by Pamela Porter

That last day of the year
we hung upside down
on the world, air hot
as exhaust from the black
taxis of Buenos Aires,
and while roses in Parque Rosedal
opened their fragrant mouths
like a Palestrina choir,
the two of you ran to the window
calling, "Snow!"
From the windows
of all the office towers,
workers tossed the year's
papers into the open air,
faces serious as ice.
December's memos, the first
flakes, floated on the bitter wind;
windshield wipers plowed the drifts
of November's announcements.
October fell, with the date and hour
of a funeral, then September,
August, the grey decisions
of July, a list
of those to let go, jealous tangos
of June and May set free
into the azure sky.
We walked the Avenida
in that bright disorder,
the neatly tied loose ends
flung open, the hoary
edges of graphs
flaming in the sun.


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