Now March Melts | Cassie Hottenstein

A close-up of sage green grass and amber leaves glistening with frost.
Image: Herr Bohn

emerge from winter cocoon
into daffodil spring,
the cracking of bones & ice
and the slush slipping from pine—
the yawns & shhs emerge—
duckling dawn
earth cleans her scars this way:
lifting & washing under the folds,
fresh cotton flapping like a surrender
to the restarted zodiac,
to the irrational golden fleece of Aries
unshaven despite the warmth—
how the tides deliver a new salt to upper lips,
an emerging, a dusting out
of all coughs cooped by winter;
the pages aren’t clean, the pages aren’t even pages,
they’re still trees,
still grand along the yet-unbroken sky !
the pinnacle of her year
exists in cool mountain runoff
the blue dunk & minnows
along curious toes after a long creek-side stroll,
the relief of the stretch
and the new dogwood petals that ferry their way
to a better tomorrow,
to a brighter ocean shore.


Cassie Hottenstein is currently between Denver and Jacksonville, mountain and ocean. Her poetry and stories have been featured in magazines such as Boulder Weekly, the Talon Review, Every Pigeon, and the Tampa Review Online. When she’s not writing poetry, she’s probably playing Animal Crossing or doing someone’s taxes in exchange for money and tasty peanuts.

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