A Requiem for Winter

Wherefore art thou Winter?
No bitter chill of death?
No unexpected moment’s warmth?
Why have you not come?

No crisp dawn to greet the day?
No fine lace upon the glass?
No white rime to tell
That Jack came at last?

Autumn overly prolonged
No golden leaves to warm the soul
Just grey – all grey
And rain

Old Father Thames
Has over-indulged
Banks over flowed
His girth spread far across the plain

Everywhere – in Mariner speech
Stands water times two
Flooding lanes and houses
What are we to do?

So Winter when will you come again?
With icy blast and air that gasps
Honest cold to still the land
Preparations for the spring, in hand?

Martin Addison, 27th January 2014



  1. Plenty of winter over here Martin . . . hope it stops raining soon!

    • Hi Patti – yes, I hear it’s very bad over in the northeast of the US. I hope you are keeping warm and, more importantly, safe.

      I’m lucky, I live on a hill so no flooding but lots of people are suffering out in the country. Somerset levels are especially bad but I understand that around Ely it’s pretty poor also. Wingate & Finchley had a game abandoned for Waterlogged Pitch – that’s never happened before in “living memory!” Perhaps that tells how bad it is 😦

      • I heard the Somerset levels were bad enough some time ago . . . and a waterlogged pitch certainly makes a change from a frozen one! To tell you the truth Martin, I think I prefer the bitter cold of an Arctic Vortex than the constant rain – at least we get a blue sky!

      • Me too Patti.. Me Too 🙂

  2. Your poem is quite beautiful, but the weather has been exasperating, hasn’t it!

  3. I like your verse, I’d be honoured if you would consider joining a poetry festival I’m hosting very week:

    Welcome to Writercafe’s most unique poetic tournament.

    It’s very important for me to find talent from all over the world!

    I’d like writers to enter who don’t usually join contents to showcase their work in our Poetry Festival, I hope you can join?


    Fore more information how to apply please consult this link:


  4. Winter is residing with us. He came early and with a vengeance – and shows no signs of leaving.

  5. Hope you get a good dose of cold soon Martin, great poem!

  6. This is beautifully composed, Martin. I really enjoyed reading it on the strength of the poetry, but also to learn something about your current lack of true winter. Over here all we’re hearing about is the bitterness of winter across the country. And then here in California we’re desperate for rain. So Mother Nature is apparently globally confused! You have so many talents!

    • Thank you Debra. I enjoy writing poetry but, as I explained to Wuji above, I can’t force it – the inspiration has to be there. The weather has certainly given food for thought. Most of my US friends are in the deep freeze – you’re the odd one out with wall-to-wall sunshine and no rain! I studied Climate change in my Open University course and understand that there is a continuing cycle to the earth’s weather with cold and warm centuries – The Thames used to freeze over between the 1500’s and the 1700’s and there are records of previous centuries when it did so too. But the evidence presented in the coursework suggests that the climate is gradually becoming warmer outside of that natural cycle – a sort of overlaying pattern if you will. Global warming? Very probably!

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