Shades of Gray

by Christine Gray

The heat runs incessantly
Ice forms on the edge of the window
The dog door leaks cold air
Across my bare toes on the warm floor
A few minutes before sunrise
A thousand shades of gray

Sky like heavy smoke lying low
Snowy rooftops boxed in a line,
One, two, three, a road, then open space
Leaden background bleeds between shapes
Furnace vents steam ashy breaths upward
Almost black windows form murky shadows
Spidery tree limbs outlined in gossamer
Not-quite-white lines of crystals
Frozen like an Ansel Adams photograph
I hold my breath for this moment

Seconds later the horizon
Far across the field cracks
Cloud cover stretches and pulls upward
Almost white for an instant before color
Red, no, fiery orange climbs the white
Evenly matched gray and orange spar
Til daylight heralds the returning sun
I’m almost sorry to see the gray go
Though I hate interminable darkness.

Shades of Gray

Additional information