It is a cold that comes so stealthily
The painful numbing of one’s toes at night
I walk to bed, my nerves seething fiercely;
A swollen, violet, abhorrent sight.
Each day apply my calamine lotion
A soothing coolness calms my suffered skin
But oh how I long for stronger potions!
And until then, I drown my pain in gin.
Quite enough I have had of agony,
Walking on corpse-like stumps of sinew grey
But to complain would be a blasphemy
So stoic I walk, through these winter days.
The burden of my life, these damned chilblains,
A gangrene of Hell, that gnaws at my veins.
by Maria Sledmere