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In early winter,

I walk the river’s edge

as snow falls silent

as a dove’s wing

on the mountain.

Scattered flakes whirl,

lifted by the wind

as a pair of mallards

bob and circle

near a giant boulder

where the eddy

lies calm. Soon,

the ducks will take flight

and escape the maelstrom

sent from the north.

As I cross the footbridge,

I stop and look back

in time to see them

lift off

over the rippling water.

How I envy their freedom,

the ability to fly away,

while all I can do is trudge

toward home as the storm

swallows my footsteps.


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