Poem ‘Face’


The face of winter
hangs rigid like death
pinching my ears
stabbing at my nose

Plumes of steam
from concrete slits
blur hunchback figures
shuffling through
the matte scenes
in ashen white

I’m looking for heat
flicking ash
on lunar prints
sealed in fortnight ice
waiting for steel facades
and great sheens of glass
to emanate your face
from rippling sepia shapes

poem and image © copyright David Francis Barker 2012
image digitally created



  1. Colline · February 9, 2012

    You have captured the epitome of our winter faces.


  2. dfb · February 9, 2012

    Thank you Colline!


  3. thespiderfarmmanager · February 9, 2012

    Wow! I’m suddenly wishing it were winter here just to be part of that imagery you invoke!


  4. dfb · February 9, 2012

    You are very kind ‘spider’. Thank you very much.


  5. Jared · February 9, 2012

    That’s what I see when I think of what it looks like when you get to Heaven and I’m not at all being sappy or sentimental. Amazing.

    Splendid, David. Splendid.


  6. dfb · February 9, 2012

    J – Thank you!


  7. Joseph Hesch · February 9, 2012

    Some terrific images and feelings here, David. Something I would feel in a “normal” Upstate New York winter…stil waiting, this year.

    I’m intrigued by the illustration. Looks so much like a watercolor done on a sopping wet page. Beautifully captures the figures backlit through the steam. Just great!


  8. dfb · February 9, 2012

    Hi – thank you so much! Well, I have to admit, I was a little influenced by American movies, and listening to Steely Dan (who, although they wrote a lot about LA were from NY of course!). I’d also been looking at the cover of Pretzel Logic, one of my favourites, and that helped. Thank you once again.


  9. Eve Redwater · February 9, 2012

    Beautiful, David! I felt the chill from the concrete as well as the blurring of the unseen, I really like it! 😀


  10. dfb · February 9, 2012

    Thank you Eve, appreciate it.


  11. granbee · February 9, 2012

    This is so dreamlike I had to pinch myself to remind myself of the cold! The dreamy steamy painting is more than wonderful. You always amaze me, inspire me, lift me up out of myself, DF.


  12. jakesprinter · February 9, 2012

    Great images my friend 🙂


  13. Betty Hayes Albright · February 10, 2012

    This is such a vividly imaged poem, David – I had to go put a sweater on! That stark, “stabbing” cold, as I imagine would be felt by a homeless person, “looking for heat” – and,

    waiting for steel facades
    and great sheens of glass
    to emanate your face
    from rippling sepia shapes

    gives one pause. Is this person waiting for the emanation of his own reflection? Waiting for the face of hope? Or of resignation and death?

    Great poem!!


  14. dfb · February 10, 2012

    Thank you Betty!


  15. dfb · February 10, 2012

    Thank you very much!


  16. dfb · February 10, 2012

    Thank you Betty! Well, I ‘imagined’ it was someone I was fond of… but who knows? Thank you!


  17. dfb · February 10, 2012

    Granbee, and as ever you are so very kind and I thank you so much!


  18. journeyintopoetry · February 12, 2012

    Beautifully captured David – winter faces!

    As we keep saying “Roll on spring” Let’s hope our faces have some shades of pink and other hopeful shades.



  19. dfb · February 12, 2012

    Thank you Christine! Warmer today! We’re heading up your way for a couple of days on Tuesday, staying near Pocklington.


  20. journeyintopoetry · February 12, 2012

    Enjoy your trip! Pocklington is only an hour or two away from us!



  21. dfb · February 12, 2012

    Thank you Christine!


  22. Lindy Lee · February 12, 2012

    Winter’s face relayed with grace…


  23. dfb · February 12, 2012

    Thank you Lindy!


  24. bardessdmdenton · February 18, 2012

    Winter’s face will soon be melting into its warmer but unpredictable off-Spring…

    Very nice!


  25. dfb · February 18, 2012

    You’re very kind, thank you!


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