Dear Maria,

I wish we could go back to the times when we were young,

You didn’t know what war was, really–

I knew but didn’t care.

Sadness was a far-off thing;

Life was joyous, a constant song

And the beauty of winter wasn’t lost, because we were alone.

There was no desperate cry for peace,

Nor sobs to end it all,

For dancing in the snow was fun, and nothing more:

Just something to do before the dawn.

Things were simpler, then, I suppose

But complicated in their own right.

The trouble with cats who live by the frozen stream

Is that they are free to think

And thinking gets the world to move

And melts the river ice.

Create a rabbit from the snow and burst it in one leap

If you dare, to earn the wrath

Of those who love the rare beast.

Sit upon an osseous throne to raise the roaring cry

Of a tiger that will haunt the dreams of many a child–

Including you and I.

It’s dream from which we can never awake,

A silence we can never break.

Is this the winter song that touched us both

And forged in stone what we loved most?

The river ice has frozen over

Until you come again–

This is a place where winter melts,

And the world’s formed by your hand.


The Playground in Winter

Originally published in KidSpirit Online for The Nature of Truth issue.

Maria Christian wrote this poem when she was 14 years old. She lives in Maine and likes to read sci fi, write poetry, and swim.

Artwork by Amy Liu created this piece she was 16 years old. She is from Dallas, Texas.