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Frost (by Arthur Sze)

Notice each windowpane has a different
Swirling pattern of frost etched on the glass.

And notice how slowly the sun melts
The glaze. It is indelible: a fossil of a fern,

Or a coelacanth, or a derelict who
Rummages in his pockets and pulls out a few

Apple cores. Notice the peculiar
angle of light in the slow shift of sunrise.

Where is the whir of the helicopter?
The search for escaped convicts in the city?

Be amazed at the shine and the wet.
Simply to live is a joy.


Every morning my wife wipes the windows down becasue of the frost that’s collected during the cold night. How I take it all for granted – Her presence, the warmth of the covers, being healthy with the ability to get out of bed, stand on my own two feet and use the bathroom without assistance! And the beautiful winter’s day outside and not least of all the beautiful patterns of frost on the window. If I noticed I’d see the beauty all around me all the time. And it’s the last line of this poem that especially grabs me – to be amazed by something so ordinary – the shine and the wet, but actually quite extraordinary. To live with awareness like that, to notice, to see – to really see, all the time throughout the day – then we’d see that everything is a miracle (as Einstein said) and we’d know that “simply to live is a joy.”

Thank you God for the morning, for the frost, for this day, for this moment and that I noticed and paused a moment to enjoy it and say, “Thank you.”