Carissa Brown

The sky fades to a hazy gray.
Ice falls in soft white sheets
and hits the ground, sizzling
like butter on a warm skillet.
A powdery white crust
blankets the cold frozen ground
like vanilla cake frosting
turning crunchy and hard
as it sits, the last in a long line
of desserts on wooden tables
in a musty church basement.
Custards and cakes mixed
by devout grandmothers
with wrinkled hands softened
by years of cooking and cleaning,
lemon juice and Clorox Bleach.
Hands accustomed to pinching cheeks,
and arms that wrap me
in the warmth of a fleece blanket.
Inside I sit, held captive by
the icicles reflecting light
like glittering crystal prisms.

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