Ice vapor towers snake from the chimneys of the office skyscrapers, the hospital, the Starbucks.
Charmed by the below-freezing air,
they are flares into the January sky,
yet reaching up and out from anywhere there is an opening.
The skyline looks like a Dickensian stage set
with the night-blue velvet curtain as backdrop,
smoke stacks and rooftops support tall silvery billows of exhaust.
Is there a chimney sweep above? A street boy with fingerless gloves below?
In this cold, we only move for necessity.
This is how we adapt
to the rigidity of winter.