Sharon Olds’ “The Winter After Your Death”


I found this Sharon Olds poem in Jane Hirshfield’s lovely collection of essays, Nine Gates and, as someone who who enjoys nature poetry more than the identity poetry so prevalent today, thought I’d share it for any other eco-fans in the crowd:

The Winter After Your Death by Sharon Olds

The long bands of mellow light
across the snow
narrow slowly.
The sun closes her gold fan
and nothing is left but black and white–
the quick steam of my breath, the dead
accurate shapes of the weeds, still, as if
pressed in an album.
Deep in my body my green heart
turns, and thinks of you. Deep in the
pond, under the thick trap
door of ice, the water moves,
the carp hangs like a sun, its scarlet
heart visible in its side.