Outside, December churns on, some ice-bathed
Engine of winter, bending branches white.
The stove eases warmth into the room they built
When it was warmer.
Watching the flame contained by cast-iron
And soapstone, with December looking in the
Window, its stare dark and predatory, he
Thinks of one more
Into this glaciated hillside; the taller children
Already extending outward and away, and
Now alone with the December night, he begins
To see it now
Eliot said about the
Snickering footman, more fully; that the time
Left is less than the time before, that each winter,
Each December, is part of some awful countdown
So now, in the December dark,
He watches the flame burning itself away into
Charcoal, and knows that what is left of it, what
Will be seen ever after
not what it was.
– December 11, 2010