Looking at the Thaw

Ice cracking a crunch and squeal
Spring will soon deliver
Snow loses its appeal

Lake ice unable to conceal
Fish swimming shiver
Ice cracking a crunch and squeal

A thaw and freeze congeal
Water rough now icy sliver
Snow loses its appeal

Snow boots no longer ideal
Rubber ice quake and quiver
Ice cracking a crunch and squeal

Snow melts the buds reveal
First flowers he’ll give her
Snow loses its appeal

Spring awakens with a shiver
Water cold rushes downriver
Ice cracking a crunch and squeal
Snow loses its appeal

This is a Villanelle. The name sounds French and maybe it originated in France – I don’t know and I’m too lazy to look it up. This form consists of 2 rhyming sounds. There are 19 lines arranged in 5 tercets (3 line stanzas) with a closing quatrain (four lines in rhyming couplets). So far it doesn’t sound too hard but the heart of this poem is that the 1st and 3rd lines of the first tercet take turns repeated 3rd line of the following tercets.

As you might have guessed this was inspired by the recent thaw where day time temperatures reached 50 degrees. This turn of events was not welcome. Sure I’m all for Spring to arrive, however, this thaw and freeze is no good for the critters and the trees and plants. The robins have returned and are looking mighty pitiful. They are cold and hungry. The earthworms had emerged when the snow was melting and the birds feasted but with the freezing temperatures they’ve disappeared. The road crews are patching the roads as fast as they can but no sooner do they fill in one pothole another forms. Along Lincoln Way there are a half dozen hub caps stuck in the snow along the curb. Each one marks a killer pothole.

17 thoughts on “Looking at the Thaw

    1. I’ve been feeling the chill in my bones too. What has me scared is the thaw has released all the cold germs and now everyone is out sick. I’m taking my vitamins and trying to stay away from the sick ones!

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  1. Interesting form for the poem you posted. I like it! Pot holes….or “chuck holes” as some call them have cost me lots over the years!

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  2. I rather imagine that a thaw is not particularly exciting when you are concerned about your basement staying dry! We are looking at several days of predicted rain — light rains, to be sure — but Montecito is again talking evacuations! It looks like our winter has finally arrived!

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    1. Yikes! I can’t imagine the angst in Montecito. So far the basement is staying dry. I keep checking. We weren’t able to get a backup pump because every store in the area is sold out. Luckily Sparky works at Lowe’s and has one ordered…

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      1. I hope the backup pump arrives before you need it! The rain is predicted to start tonight and be gone by mid-day tomorrow — but then to start up again on Wednesday and rain hard through Thursday — I’m hoping it won’t be enough to cause another boulder to let go and start another slide emergency!

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        1. We are supposed to have snow tomorrow after having 60 degree temps on Tuesday! The weather is very unpredictable here as well. The basement is still moved around to minimize any water damage… Hope all the boulders in CA stay put!!

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      2. The time frame has changed a bit — Montecito is under evacuation warning, pending a change tomorrow morning to mandatory — they anticipate that 1/2 inch of rain an hour is the trigger for more mud, and the prediction is for somewhere between 1/3 and 2/3 inches of rain an hour. My friend is out of her house tonight with her daughter, and she will persuade the son to join them tomorrow! I can’t imagine living there and anticipating this type of behavior for the next 5 years!

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      3. I, too would be looking for other permanent housing — but there’s not much in Santa Barbara and it’s way overpriced! The whole of Montecito is again evacuated, as of 6 pm this evening, for a storm expected to hit in the wee hours tonight — my friends are in a hotel in Santa B, safe and ready for what comes! Glad your basement is staying dry — I think I’d be looking for higher ground there too!

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      4. The rain ws stronger than the 1/2″/hour threshold for the evacuations — there was a little mud in the streams, but nothing that caused any damage. The evacuations were lifted at 9 am this morning. It’s raining here tonight, but I’m on high ground and we haven’t had fires recently!

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    1. Thanks for the compliment! I mostly write the poems to keep my mind nimble – it is good mental exercise! Our weather has been all over the place with more to come. I kind of think mother nature is having a schizophrenic episode.

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