Charcoal lines create the landscape.

Swift strokes of the Master Artist

Depict the bony ribs of leafless trees

Against the empty canvas of the sky.

The earth’s unyielding, hidden by snow.

I long to scribble with vibrant paints

Upon this black and white scene,

To breathe life into the smoggy air.

Walking alone in this coloring book,

Everything is silent and stiff.

My shoes against the winter grit

Is the only thing heard for miles

In this expanse of frigid, smoky grays.

I hold my breath with the world,

And sink into the silence of February.

Becoming for a brief moment

Just another element in this drawing

Of charcoal against the blank sky.

Photo by Shanley Truman