A Poetic Introduction to January 2015

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Winter poems and quotes to begin the new year.

"In the bleak mid winter, frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron, Water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
In the bleak midwinter of, long ago."
~Christina Rossetti 1830-1894

"If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome." 
~Anne Bradstreet 1612-1672

"Every mile is two in winter." 
~George Herbert 1593-1633

"Every winter, When the great sun has turned his face away, The earth goes down into a vale of grief, And fasts, and weeps, and shrouds herself in sables, Leaving her wedding-garlands to decay--Then leaps in spring to his returning kisses." 
~Charles Kingsley 1819-1875

"Announced by all the trumpets of the sky, 
Arrives the snow, and, driving o'er the fields, 
Seems nowhere to alight: the whited air
Hides hills and woods, the river, and the heaven, 
And veils the farmhouse at the garden's end.
The sled and traveler stopped, the courier's feet
Delayed, all friends shut out, the housemates sit
Around the radiant fireplace, enclosed
In a tumultuous privacy of storm."
~Ralph Waldo Emerson 1803-1882

"Winter is in my head, but eternal spring is in my heart."
~Victor Hugo 1802-1885

"Blow, blow, thou winter wind
Thou art not so unkind,
As man's ingratitude."
~William Shakespeare 1564-1616

"On a lone winter evening,
when the frost Has wrought a silence." 
~John Keats 1795-1821

"Whose woods there are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer 
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep."
~Robert Frost 1874-1963

"Out of the bosom of the air,
Out of the cloud-folds of her garments shaken,
Over the woodlands brown and bare,
Over the harvest-fields forsaken,
Silent, and soft, and slow
Descends the snow.

Even as our cloudy fancies take
Suddenly shape in some divine expression,
Even as the troubled heart doth make
In the white countenance confession,
The troubled sky reveals 
The grief it feels.

This is the poem of the air,
Slowly in silent syllables recorded;
This is the secret of despair,
Long in its cloudy bosom hoarded,
How whispered and revealed
To wood and field.
~John Greenleaf Whittier 1807-1892