“In The Hollow Of Winter Twilight”,

The silence of winter makes space for contemplation.  This season of stillness, expectation, is also a time for  solitude.  Books, a low fire, the company of cats and dogs, the bare-boned limbs of trees outside, the possibilities of this ’empty’ season draw our minds to contemplate our lives and where we are ‘going’. I need this space, just to be still, to feel gratitude.  There will be spring, with planting of gardens and the wonder of buds, but for now, this bare, washed palette outside, with its greys, blacks and duns comforts my eyes and mind.  It is enough.

Lady Nyo


In the hollow of winter twilight

The ground of the soul is darkened,

Silent, waiting,

A shallow breath will do.

Muted  tints

Flood earth and sky,

Black bare-armed trees,


Now softened in this sullen light,

 To clothe with longing.

True winter has begun

This season of scarcity, silence,

Survival never assured,

The very thinness of air,

A sharp, searing bitter breath of air,

The inhaled pain alerts us to life.

No excited cries of birds,

No rumble of young  squirrels

Turning tree hollows into hide and seek,

Only faint tracks in the layered snow

Gives  evidence of others around,

Small three-point, delicate prints

As if a creature bounded on tiptoe.

There is little left to do

In this darkened ground of  soul-time

But rest before the fire

And fill the hollow of the season

With hope, patience and desire.


Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2012

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12 Responses to ““In The Hollow Of Winter Twilight”,”

  1. Katie Says:

    Your imagery is, as always, achingly beutiful. This season, Winter, has changed for me over the past few years. The beauty has become double-edged, as much beauty is. Seen from a warm, safe place, like a window seat, it is silent, full of contrasts. Seen up close, shivering in it shadows, it is sharp-edged and full of life. It doesn’t beckon us to join it, like the other seasons, it cautions us to stay in our safe, warm havens and be content to observe.


  2. ladynyo Says:

    Katie, your own words are as poetic as they can be! You are a marvelous poet.

    I am awaiting my traveling vet to put to sleep my Laddie, 12 years old with chronic bronchitis….He has beat pneumonia this week, but I am trying to lessen his misery.

    The maple tree outside my window has tiny pompoms of bud, too soon for spring, this crazy warming trend. I wish for snow and those days where you are forced to stay in and do nothing except settle in with a book, but then I think of those without proper heat, and especially the young animals who try to survive the cold. Double-edged, indeed…this season, too.

    Thank you, Katie for reading and your comment….



  3. ayala Says:

    Jane, a beautiful write.


  4. ladynyo Says:

    Thank you, Ayala!



  5. CZBZ Says:

    “In the Hollow of Winter Twilight” makes me feel satisfied. At ease with the world as it is.

    I love this poem.



  6. ladynyo Says:

    Hi CZ!

    I am so happy it moves you so. That is a great satisfaction to any poet.

    I tried a couple of times this week to access your site, but it took me to a blog entry (which I would have read anyway!) of 2009….and stuck there at the top…couldn’t get the cursor to move for some reason. This happened about 4 times….and I still can’t get to your site.

    Hopefully, the thing will repair itself…..I love to read your blog…get so much from it every time I read….I think readers from this blog also would want to read your remarkable writing.

    I still am pushing for you to drop that rolling pin and write that book…just compile your many blog entries and Bob’s the word! LOL!

    You have such a remarkable voice, CZ…to go with that acquired wisdom….and it is something people need to read…me especially!



  7. CZBZ Says:

    You are toooooooo kind, Jane. I’m not sure my writing is remarkable but I accept your compliment with a grateful heart. You are so kind, Jane.

    p.s. Would you mind emailing me more details about the problem you had accessing my site so I can contact ‘blogger’?


  8. ladynyo Says:

    Sure, CZ…

    But! the problem probably is on my end…it usually is.

    I saw your blog address in my stats….clicked on it, and it just took me to a page from 2009…which! I would have been very interested in reading. Unfortunately, it would not let me go down the page…like it was stuck…so that is why I think it is on my side of the pond.

    I’ll try again, and email you with the results…could have been a temporary glitch in the system….


    And You Are An Amazing Writer….don’t doubt that!!



  9. Shawna Says:

    This is a great line:

    “The ground of the soul is darkened”


  10. ladynyo Says:

    Hi Shawna…

    That line…comes from a writing of Meister Eckhart, a 14th century theologian in the Rhineland. I had written this poem late last winter and was never happy with what came after that first line: something like “‘when the air is dark and dreary”….it just wasn’t doing it for me. I don’t think I used this poem because of that, and very recently, (like a week ago or so…) came across Meister Eckhart’s wording…and it opened this poem for me. It made it…sing.

    Sometimes we need that little nudge and it helps us on our poetical way. Meister Eckhart has helped me in another way…spiritually. Otherwise, the narrowness of fundamentalist religions would have made my stomach turn and my own head implode. Eckhart might have been talking about something theologically specific, but I found that line to be one of great breath, beauty and meaning.

    Thank you, Shawna, for reading and your comment.

    Lady Nyo


  11. Gay Says:

    Oh so loved reading your notes. This piece is wonderfully male in contrast to the climb to the moon of the last which seemed so female. It’s as though you are capturing essences in a tea ceremony in both. Each one wrapped in courtesy and ceremony, each one so pristine and clean, the goodness just on the boil with the result of steeped fragrant poetry when it’s poured. Delicious!


  12. ladynyo Says:

    Thanks, Gay…

    This is so strange….I didn’t post this poem on dverse this week….back in January, actually. What I posted for comment was “Lord Nyo’s Moon Child” which was the companion piece to “Moon Child” of the previous week on dverse.

    But thanks, anyway.

    Lady Nyo


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