The Deep Freeze

Day 1

Day 1
Day 1

These are days
about which
lovers dread
or dream
icicles drip
from the signpost

First & Main
to the right,
safety, the schoolhouse,
sun porches, wood heat
to the left,
the open harbor
icebreaker regattas
rum and fantasy dreams.

Day 2

Day 2
Day 2

The ice has claws
frothing, calving bergs
crowd for perches
at the shore

lovers turn their backs
the wind knives
through shoulderblades
& hips
a rattle of bones
barstools scrape
a hardwood floor
the ice climbs up
out of the sea.

Day 3

Day 3
Day 3

No use
in going out today
ice cracks the crowns
of three-story locusts

at daybreak
the bay stands
a cracked glass of solid ice
’till the froth of sunlight
coaxes racing water
the 7 a.m. higgins boat
makes the crossing
one last time.

Day 4

Day 4
Day 4

We wandered down to see
the icebergs one last time
a heavy arctic wind brought
heavy arctic seas

But where there is motion
waters remain unfrozen
where there is motion
hearts are bound to thaw
where there is motion
there is a calendar hope
whispering a dream of spring.


Beth Young

Beth Young has been covering the East End since the 1990s. In her spare time, she runs around the block, tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at

One thought on “The Deep Freeze

  • February 21, 2015 at 11:03 pm

    Completely evocative, totally raw, and beautifully carved from a single block of ice – you make my heart melt, Beth! It’s a wonder to see Walt Whitman’s Paumanok still providing such a source of inspiration – keep it up!


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