Ágnes Cserháti, Elegies of Snow and Silence


for Ani

Tram wires shape the darkening sky, downtown busyness
alights along Spadina, past Dundas, to Queen and back again
the two of us walking side by side, pausing over crates
of green beans and lychee, watching barbeque duck hung
in high windows, our exchange a smattering of words
love measured in syllables, always laughter
a pillar against wasting death, or certainty of blackness
only your voice bringing me back from the brink
metal stars strung in eternity.


Thaw mud on the side of the road, the end of something
tremors under the surface skin, the woman keening
below, an empty grave, her mind’s aberration
impatient for burial, surrendering to chaos
the deceit of the fallen, an endless pit
deep-throated hellfire, the dragon shifts its scales
a hoarder of pain, wrought and twisted to despair
blind to possibility, no suckling for rebirth
gentleness lost, expectation dying out
what remains an elegy of wet snow and silence.


As I’m leaving, each moment rewrites itself,
the moment just passed, and again –
the forgotten surging in the everyday,
in mental notes, verbal cues, old photographs,
in new-found reserve, almost gone –
like tending a flock of sheep, stubborn, unkept,
sturdying each step in awe of hill and sky.

Ágnes Cserháti lives in Aurora, Ontario. Writing mainly of memory and place, her poetry has won the Hart House Poetry Prize (University of Toronto) twice and has been shortlisted for the Bridport Prize and the Gwendolyn MacEwen Poetry Competition (Toronto). Her writing has been published in Hart House Review along with journals in the UK and Ireland. She is also the founder and editor of Rufus Books Publishing.

4 thoughts on “Ágnes Cserháti, Elegies of Snow and Silence

  1. Three poems that surprise, shock and speak of a yearning or the intangible. However much they may ,
    on the surface,refer to the everyday-ish experience, there lurks beneath them a sense of loss of something
    for ever out of reach.
    I found them touching and tender, disturbing and thought provoking.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s