Peace and Conflict, Poetry

The day after tomorrow

The day after tomorrow

you write to me
of blowing snow and whiteouts.
of snow goggles and skating rinks
you tell me your cat may need clothing
and you joke about
living in the movie
‘the day after tomorrow’

I write to you
of scorching sun and blackouts.
of checkpoints and closed roads
of a play I went to see
called ‘between the devil and the deep blue sea’

You ask for news of home.
have you forgotten that
over here, no news is good news
or have black memories buried themselves
under white snowflakes

you say it is freezing there. again. You had to dig out your new car
from underneath
a mountain of snow this morning.

It’s burning here. still.  this morning old women
and new babies were dug out
from underneath
mounds of mangled metal

you say everything there is predictable. I begin to think that is a good thing.
Here, a white van has become a black Maria
and nothing is certain.

and I have decided not to postpone my reply to you
the day after tomorrow.

February 2008

[Editors note: Vivimarie Vanderpoorten’s book of poetry “Nothing Prepares You” published in February 2007 was awarded the 2007 Gratiaen Prize on 26th April 2008]