Snow at Arlington

It snowed here at Arlington last night.
And left an iri­des­cent blan­ket of white
That cov­ers the ground in pris­tine still­ness
And sets sparkling crowns on mar­bled markers.

Gazing now ‘cross these hal­lowed fields
I see the sun glint from frozen crys­tals
Like stars are light­ed for souls depart­ed
As the uni­verse sings to mark their passing.

The great and small lie here togeth­er
Side by side for all eter­ni­ty.
In qui­et repose as brethren should
To hear no more the call of cadence.

The air is crisp, the clouds are part­ing
The sound of horse’s hooves is dis­tant
As anoth­er pro­ces­sion comes a’calling
To approach this place of final rest.

Soon will be heard the crack of rifles,
The mew of Taps played on gold­en bugle,
The muf­fled sobs of wife or moth­er,
The shuf­fle of depart­ing mourners.

The pure white snow will remain ‘til mor­row
The day when sunlight’s warmth pre­vails.
And the green ver­dure of grass peeps through
To lend a dif­fer­ent still­ness to this place.

There’s a gen­tle seren­i­ty here this day
‘Midst the cold, crisp air of winter’s stay
As I raise my col­lar ‘gainst a cool wind’s whis­per
And reflect upon this snow at Arlington.

  • Chuck Witt

    Chuck is a retired archi­tect, a for­mer news­pa­per colum­nist, and a life­long res­i­dent of Winchester.