Poetry Mixtape 46: Something Missing

So far this November and December in Chicago, temperatures have been quite a bit above normal. Any precipitation has been rain, with none of the white stuff in sight. (Which, I must say, I am happy about…snow is lovely, but shoveling it and driving in it have become increasingly difficult for me the last few years.)

But a poem about snow is always welcome. Especially one as beautiful as this one by Miguel de Unamuno.

The Snowfall Is So Silent

by Miguel de Unamuno

Translated by Robert Bly


The snowfall is so silent,

so slow,

bit by bit, with delicacy

it settles down on the earth

and covers over the fields.

The silent snow comes down

white and weightless;

snowfall makes no noise,

falls as forgetting falls,

flake after flake.

It covers the fields gently

while frost attacks them

with its sudden flashes of white;

covers everything with its pure

and silent covering;

not one thing on the ground

anywhere escapes it.

And wherever it falls it stays,

content and gay,

for snow does not slip off

as rain does,

but it stays and sinks in.

The flakes are skyflowers,

pale lilies from the clouds,

that wither on earth.

They come down blossoming

but then so quickly

they are gone;

they bloom only on the peak,

above the mountains,

and make the earth feel heavier

when they die inside.

Snow, delicate snow,

that falls with such lightness

on the head,

on the feelings,

come and cover over the sadness

that lies always in my reason.


Unamuno was a favorite author of a friend who passed away in April. As we prepare to pass into a new year, the snow may fall, but the sadness for that loss lies always in my reason.

If you want to write, use the weather to comment on something you will not forget.


4 thoughts on “Poetry Mixtape 46: Something Missing

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