Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Hayden Saunier: How I Suit Up for Winter Storms

Boots from my son’s eighth grade year, 

outgrown far faster than the heart-deep 

humiliations he bore for being gay 

that I could not protect him from. 

I’ve worn them ever since through sleet and snow. 

A sheepskin hat too hot for any weather

but what nor’easters scream down across fields, 

one fleece edge turned so the bite 

taken from it by our long dead terrier mutt 

is covered by the blue wool muffler 

my daughter knitted for me 

one fall when unemployed and anxious. 

Leggings, snow pants, and here, 

I might as well confess my underwear’s 

not good; it’s every day, functional, 

won’t ride up which makes it perfect

for this task. Shirt, sweater, upscale 

jacket passed down from a friend, 

my husband’s old coat with torn pocket, 

bright red gloves my mother bought 

on sale before she died, and zippered 

in my sleeve: chapstick and my father’s 

handkerchief. All set. I’m suited up, 

armored, armed with shovel and salt, 

to break and keep a path for any to come home. 


Hayden Saunier is a poet, actor and teaching artist living in the Philadelphia area. Her books include A Cartography of Home (Terrapin Books, 2021).

Copyright 2021 Hayden Saunier.

6 comments on “Hayden Saunier: How I Suit Up for Winter Storms

  1. Shann Whited
    February 6, 2021

    Hayden, your work always tugs at my heart. I love the momentary trips you take me on.
    Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Barbara Huntington
    February 6, 2021

    There are still things I wear that belonged to my mom, my husband, my kids that spark a brief memory and longing for those who will visit eventually snd those who never will. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. José A. Alcántara
    February 6, 2021

    Love those last two lines: the bringing together of the sacred and the profane and how they become the same.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. DiosRaw
    February 6, 2021

    🔥

    Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on February 6, 2021 by in Environmentalism, Health and Nutrition, Poetry and tagged , , .

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