She stores up her days now
like a farmer preparing for winter
wraps up the papery shell of her life,
watches the earth slowly sleep,
battens down her memories
so that she cannot lose any more,
gathers mementoes of every outing,
paper napkins, menus, church newsletters,
bundles of used stamps are ornaments
and on the sideboard memoriam cards
in rows like tombstones.

The walls dream in lilac light,
shadows lift off Ben Bulben
and she watches the mountain
for signs of snow, gleaming white snow
clean-sweeping her mind.
Childood tugs at her,
plays with her every breath
and the child within her,
in red mittens and scarf
gathers snow to make a snowman,
falls into deep pockets of white magic,
until it envelops her voice, her song, her space.