The Illuminist

St Jerome in the scriptorium by the Master of Parral via Wikimedia Commons

St Jerome in the scriptorium by the Master of Parral via Wikimedia Commons

As we brace for the coming storm and I hear the plows already roaring by up and down the street, this struck me as more than appropriate.

The Illuminist

by Jane Hirschfield

Even in his glass cabin you can see
the man driving the snowplow
is whistling, happy. He races
one road, then the next, moving new snow.

A monk patiently hammering gold leaf,
before him the world grows pliably, steadily brighter.

And if more will fall again tonight,
no matter.
He will put on his hat, his gloves,
and make again order.

All day the plow’s sound rises,
a pre-Gregorian chanting singing its singer.
Gold of winter sun grows thinner and thinner.

he can lay it right in with the little plow.

The scriptorium darkens over white vellum.
The lengthening ink stroke, puttering,

5 Responses to The Illuminist

  1. Valerie, NZ January 26, 2015 at 9:36 pm #

    Thinking of you, and following events on the news as they unfold. Stay warm!

    • Melanie Bettinelli January 26, 2015 at 10:29 pm #

      Thank you. I’ll try to remember to post updates. Right now the kids are all happy because we’ve had so little snow so far this winter. Bella is thrilled and could hardly focus on school work today, thinking so hard about the coming snow.

  2. M.E. January 27, 2015 at 10:29 am #

    How perfectly appropriate! So beautiful. Praying you and yours stay warm and well in the midst of the weather! Enjoy the snow, we don’t have any here (sigh).

  3. Pentimento January 27, 2015 at 9:30 pm #

    I love this. Thank you for posting it.

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