Issue No. 5, Summer 2013

A Ballad of the Northlands
Sandi Leibowitz

seven snowflakes spun in air

—joined—

took on bone,
feathers,
breath

The snow gull swept
the wide wastes
crying for the sea,
the sea

In a gale’s confusion
she crashed to earth—
took on legs, arms,
skin and hair

The snow maid wandered
a waif of the drifts
till the castle folk found her

Such blue eyes,
such cold hands,
the prince murmured
and tried to warm her

lost himself a while
in her white arms,
in the fog of her voice
that knew only songs
of the wastelands

But always she yearned
for some far thing,
sea’s salt
cloud’s kiss

One day of snow
the north wind came for her,
chanted her unmaking

skin to feathers
song to cry
bone to ice

seven snowflakes spun in air


Sandi Leibowitz’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in magazines such as Mythic Delirium, Strange Horizons, Apex, and The Golden Key. One of her poems was recently chosen by Ellen Datlow for inclusion in The Best Horror of the Year, Vol. 5. She is a native New Yorker who teaches and sings classical and early music.