John Thorne


Antarctica


In the icebound regions of the world
Where glass-still lakes are cold and dark
The ice is clear but the water salt
And the rocks are sharp as shards of bone

In the bleak Antarctic wastes
Where time means naught to memory
The night is long, the day unending
And the sun is white and cold and clear

In the Wintry seas the ships stand fast
Held tight be bitter frozen fists
And when noon makes ice shift and snap
A deeper wind from snow-held plains drives out

And we quail beneath the decks
Burn another spar for fear of cold–
The frost that creeps at night
And the wind, howling o’er the ice

And when the deathly dawn at last appears–
When at last we see out frostbit hands–
And can look out upon forsaken lands
We wish again for night unending, and for fear

Submitted: Sunday, December 15, 2013
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