Nothing to See Here, I’m Just Snowing

Poems by Rob Carney

“How Do You Play? What’s the Score?”

Begin by pinning
seven talismans

to Night’s backyard. By rule,
this is called the Big Dipper.

By rule, you must notice that the air
stays almost warm.

Come morning, the birds will spiral.
Under vines, the ground

will thaw.
Rocks persist,

and skeletons,
but not snow.

All of us know this. That’s the rule.
Interest is temporary.

Points are deducted.
There’s always a waning moon.
“Happy New Year!”

The New Year laughs in the street.
He’s not wearing a hat.

He yells, “Nothing to see here.
I’m just snowing” . . .

someone better go and ask him in.
Go pronto or he’ll keep this up,

snowing from block
to block,

and aren’t there enough drunks already?
Like we need one more?

Hurry up now, hug him,
bring him inside;

we all know
he means well.

We’ll get the New Year some coffee.
He can purr by the fire.
“Stay Tuned for the Friday News Round-Up”

While the minutes hang
between spring

and summer,
let’s turn our attention to the future:

What will it bring?—
a thousand ski jumps?

maybe a rare gold panda?
or just a train,

two hills,
and a bridge in between?

We could make that crossing;
it would take less skill

than a Japanese garden.
And the sky wouldn’t fracture.

The clouds would still flower.
So what the hell?


robcarneyliteraryartsphotoRob Carney is the author of four previous books of poems, most recently 88 Maps (Lost Horse Press, 2015), which was named a finalist for the Washington State Book Award, as well as the forthcoming collection The Book of Sharks (Black Lawrence Press). In 2014 he received the Robinson Jeffers/Tor House Foundation Award for Poetry. His work has appeared previously in The Poet’s Billow (2015), as well as Cave Wall, Columbia Journal, Sugar House Review, and many others, and he writes a regularly featured series called “Old Roads, New Stories” for Terrain: A Journal of the Built and Natural Environments. He lives in Salt Lake City.