Cold Crawling

Toasting the iceworm.

aurora borealis

With snow falling

 too much 

in some regions 

and in others not enough, 

a question of what’s next 



from permafrost 


like a verdict 

not yet delivered,

also, certain doubts––related maybe, 

about what’s left 

to be exposed 

about the trajectory 

of history 

if that’s what 

we’re still calling it, 

so now seems like as good a time as any 

to pay 


to the iceworm

crawling through 

glacial snows 

and over ice, 

eating the red of

sun cups, and melting

when traces of winter

depart. These are not 

to be confused 

with the army project

of the Cold War, its launch 

sites under Greenland ice

not to be confused with the

great worms 

of legend heard 


beneath the northern

lights, near

the entry point 

to the land of the souls.


Inspired by news of the Cordova Iceworm Festival, which begins today.

The U.S. army project referenced above was nicknamed Project Iceworm.

Author: Stacey C. Johnson

I keep watch and listen, mostly in dark places.

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