Amy Barlow Liberatore… stories of lost years, wild times, mental variety, faith, and lots of jazz

Tag Archives: Snow

The Underbelly of Spring
Riley Little Snow 001
In Vermont, they have two seasons:
Winter, plus a week of bad sledding.

In Puerto Rico, you wouldn’t know spring
if it rose up and bit you in your tanned ass.

In Wisconsin, it’s freeze, then thaw, then
freeze again… then roast in your bedding.

In Upstate NY, you go to school to get
ready for finals and sweat through class.

Spring is an unpredictable, mercurial,
unsentimental storm of hot and cold.

April may shower, but May does not
guarantee flowers or blue skies.

May is here, yet Spring has snowstorms
hidden in the seasonal envelope’s fold.

It’s muddy. It’s messy and inconvenient.
Spring hides behind a sunny-side disguise.

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

For Imaginary Garden With Real Toads, Izy wanted the truth about Spring… all the bad parts. I’ve been through the season in every place mentioned, and I guarantee that I never put away the snow shovel until after Mother’s Day. We once had a surprise storm on (no joke) May Day, and it dumped three feet of wet snow, made me pull little Riley back to the house from the ditched car on a plastic sled, and still the Jeeps and SUVs were out on the road doing donuts. That’s the storm that made possible the picture of Riley above! Whodathunkit?

Also at my poetic all-season resort, Poets United.  Peace, Amy

Snow Bizness

It is March in Wisconsin
and, any day now,
no matter how green the meadow,
how tawny the wrens who
flew in for Spring,
nor how green
the ivy grows,
we know our TV screens
will sketch the sad
Doppler Crayola scrawl:
One more blizzard.

Snow bury-
ing our lawns,
shunning the calendar,
sticking thick thorns into
Madison’s collective psyche.
As suburban assault vehicles
zigzag on the Beltway
(drivers oblivious to the concept
of SUV rollover ratings),
our guts are twisted and we
tend to cluster in bars,
seeking solace in our famous
Wisconsin micro-brews.

Shallow coping mechanism, I know,
but until we are assured the
stout-stemmed ironweed and
apple saplings are in bloom,
we await our twisted fate…
moods indigo, yet somehow

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

De Jackson of Whimsygizmo fame was gatekeeper in the Imaginary Garden With Real Toads, and she gave us a huge list of words. A veritable cornucopia; in fact, I was only able to use most of them: Sketch, screen, march (well, March), Snowberry (um, snow bury-ing, groan), tawny, meadow, stout-stemmed, cluster (not tempted in any way, shape, or form to pair an obscenity with that word – see, I’m all grown up now), zigzag, leave, twisted, indigo, shunning, ivy, sapling, and thorns. I didn’t use elder, shallow, or adaptation. Dang!

Thanks, De, for one more chance to comment on the weather here in Madison. I really do love it here, but, dear Lord, would it possible for the snow to melt before June?

This is also posted at my poetic igloo, Poets United. Peace and silky long-johns, Amy


I’m a newly minted Cheesehead.

Wisconsinites call anyone
from the other side of Lake Erie
“an East Coaster.”

They fretted that we would
never make it through a
Madison winter.

I replied with one word: “Buffalo.”

Slowly they realized that, not only is
New York State snowy and cold and
a cheese heaven in itself,

but I have a Midwestern pedigree.
Mom grew up in Iowa.
I’m willing to eat all the ‘pig corn’ they put on my plate!

© Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

For ABC Wednesday, brought to you by the letter “C,” and also on Poets United, my shelter from the storm.