Jenna Heller

Jenna Heller lives in Christchurch with her partner and their two teens. She is a member of the South Island Writers’ Association and more of her writing can be found in Popshot, *82 Review, Eucalypt, and Headland.

I’ve been whittling away at this poem for nearly ten years, trying to blend my strong memories of American winters with my more recent experience of New Zealand winters. 


Winter is a sheet of music

a chorus of Hallelujah
a capella voices rising in a hollow
a clear twinkling of matariki

it’s Joy in the hands of Bach
a descant of ice shimmering
an hour-glass of swirling snow

it’s a woollen jersey beading wet
a path through measures of black beech
a crescendo of footprints here, there and back again

it’s a solo fantail flitting from limb to limb
a kereru swooping low in silent sighs
a caesura before beginning again