So beat the drums and say the words/to usher in the spring

My cheeks are red as holly
berries, red as blood;
the earth is frozen solid like
a heart that will not love
But you can only keep that
feeling locked inside so long
until the water flows and
bursts its banks;
you cannot hold it in

And of the gifts that winter
brought to me, you were the one
Who fought away the biting winds
and brought me back the sun—
The lion in the winter who saw me as I am
who came when snow was falling,
and took me by the hand.

Through the bitter frost and snow,
a-marching we will go
through the bitter frost and snow…

And if there is a song in your heart
Then let us sing
To warm the darkness of the earth
From winter’s ravaging
To warm the shadows of the heart
That some small breeze can break
So beat the drums and say the words
To usher in the spring

–Susan McKeown, “Through the Bitter Frost and Snow”, 1997

2 thoughts on “So beat the drums and say the words/to usher in the spring

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