Deep in Winter
The last hours of the old year fade
as the late train to Vancouver rumbles
through this comfortable neighborhood.
In suburbs spirits rise, tongues trip
as cheer becomes the norm, but beneath
a billboard beckoning downtown
young ones less fortunate, hunker, hide.
And further down the road a monitor
records the heartbeat of the weary man
in room fifteen, each beep a ration
of his stake. His restless hands
clutch blankets close. He doesn't know
what measure life might bring, needs
neither dark not triumph from this night.
Linda Conroy is a retired social worker who likes to write about the complexity of behaviors that make us human, our connection to nature and to the changing times. Her poems have appeared in various journals and anthologies. She is the author of a poetry collection, Ordinary Signs.