Glowering gray sinks slowly from peak to plain
warning an anxious populace to hurry.
Hurry to stock up on groceries, to fill up on gas,
to do what won’t wait till the weekend.
“Too big to fail,” they joke on TV, “this one’s too big to fail.”
Gloating as if they’d fathered it themselves.
“A foot or more. At least two days.”
Hurry to leave the mountains,
hurry to leave the highlands,
hurry to leave the state if you don’t plan to stay a while.
Find the shovels, the gloves, the coats and boots.
Close the schools, waive the flights, gird the city.
Prep the plows and call the drivers, spread the sand, the salt, the slicer.
“Three feet in the mountains, maybe four.”
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!
Wax the skis and boards, hurray!
Load the chains, blankets, emergency road kits into the SUV.
Don’t forget the ice scraper, the shovel, the extra de-icer.
In the high country, in the ski towns, joy reigns as sky, earth — slopes! — whiten.
This is a big one, wet and heavy, and it’s still October.
Smiling shop owners tidy their displays;
grinning lift operators check gears and cables one more time;
gleeful lodge owners scan glowing screens as bookings soar.
… it’s starting to snow in Denver.