It Takes More Than a Robin to Make Winter Cold

after Hank Williams

By Chris Pexa

It’s your cough that travels across the glacier, which is covered now in blue air that resembles flowering trees in April, a pair of lovers spreading out their picnic. When we share weather like this, I often wish for simple, unseasonable things. Then, maybe for the excitement, I wish the lovers had brought switchblades. The woman opening the man’s chest at that exact moment he turns to admire a robin. The bird is down from the mountains for Easter. He has heard that Jesus is rising, and there is dull plumage to be oiled red, there is blood enough for every man. The woman doesn’t drink, so she cleans her blade on the checkered cloth. So now the bottle of champagne in its little wicker cage will stay full, which makes me sad. There, I’ve just created a little sadness for us, a little something to accompany the snow that’s begun.


Chris Pexa's poems have appeared in Hayden's Ferry Review, Crab Orchard Review, Juked, and other journals. He is pursuing a Ph.D. in English Literature at Vanderbilt University and lives in Nashville with his wife, Melissa, and daughter, Wren.

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