Weather Man

Hannah Smith | Poetry

A landline connected your hands
to the sky. You ordered up
the thickest snow we’d seen this far east
of the Mississippi.

You kept receipts
for sunshine, so my sister and I
could bathe in spring. I wanted

your seasons to follow us south
to the hot, dry house, the patchy grass
in the yard. Each year you bloomed
trees for my mother, your daughter. The dogwoods

lined the hills behind Long Knife. No fence,
only soft rain carving
its way through the leaves. I ran barefoot
to feel closer to green.

On your final birthday, I drove north
across four states, along the tail of a storm. You and I
wrapped ourselves in blankets, watched ice fall
from telephone wires. Not enough air

in the room to fill
your lungs on a day too cold to let in
the winter. Your own weather
bleeding through caulk along glass.

Now, this day, on a low, curved street
where you lived in a house with four girls
and a dog, where I live in a house

with a dog and too many windows
to ever keep clean, it storms
again. I am unsure

how, just yesterday, the sun
pulled early buds from the tips
of branches. Your hands
behind the rays. And today, heavy rain
I wade through
in my basement. The waterline

still clear from the last flood. So much
thunder. So much wind.