Poem of the Week: “Winter” by Billy Collins

Assistant to the Director, Estee Schlenner, chose this week’s poem, here’s what she had to say: “I love this poem for its simplicity. Winter can feel very long, and sometimes lonely, but there’s also simple and cozy moments that make it feel very special. These moments are perfectly illustrated in this poem.”


A little heat in the iron radiator,
the dog breathing at the foot of the bed,

and the windows shut tight,
encrusted with hexagons of frost.

I can barely hear the geese
complaining in the vast sky,

flying over the living and the dead,
schools and prisons, and the whitened fields.

Poem copyright © 2014 by Billy Collins, “Winter” (Poetry East, No. 82, 2014).  Poem reprinted by permission of Billy Collins and the publisher.


Published by cpoetrymsu

The Center for Poetry opened in the fall of 2007 to encourage the reading, writing, and discussion of poetry and to create an awareness of the place and power of poetry in our everyday lives. We think about this in a number of ways, including through readings, shows, community outreach, and workshops. We are at work building a poetry community at MSU and in the greater Lansing area. Contact: cpoetry@msu.edu (517) 884-1932 http://www.poetry.rcah.msu.edu

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