Two-faced January

Just as I was rejoicing the gorse being back in bloom yesterday and the coming of spring…we woke up to this.

two-faced January
The Cailleach likes her little jokes…

and you really know why January is named for the two-faced God. We even have a stone idol of Janus in Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark. Obviously, that resonated with typical January weather here. So they erected a god to appease.

Fermanagh Janus in Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark
Fermanagh Janus figure

It’s that typically wet, slushy Irish snow. It won’t last the day. Or most of it won’t down where we live. Up on the mountains it will cling on in the Cailleach’s natural habitat. Then some proper snow begins to drift down, which makes me wonder will it accumulate.

But it was time to get down to poetry practice.

I noodled with some haiku. Watched the birds visit the feeders, which my dear husband replenished first thing. Watched the sky change and change again. Refused to let the cats out to worry the birds. Wondered at how the Cailleach really does like to jerk our chains by throwing sleet and slushy snow at us just as the bulbs are coming up and the days get brighter and we are beginning to come out of our winter hidey holes. Watched how the dreary grey dueled with a feisty bolt of sunshine, which then would retreat. The Maiden Brigid is still flexing up for this fight.

Then this…


If we could map the sky
from that flash of sun bursting
briefly on the western horizon
and the passing grey plummeting,
its iron curtain in the east.

If we could map the shifting of cloud
the patches of azure blue
that then go sallow all
within the space of an hour,
and less.

But who's marking time
like you would count a stitch?
Change is constant. Time slips.
I watch the morning snow melt
drips from the eaves.

Minutes matter. They are also all for naught.
We think that we can map the sky,
plot our direction and make a path.
But we have no Fate immunity.
Plans cannot out run getting caught.

Copyright © 2019 Bee Smith. All rights reserved.

Featured image for the haiku meme today – Photo by Anthony Ievlev on Unsplash

2 thoughts on “Two-faced January

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