Written in memory of sister IRENE JOHNSON BROADDUS
WHO WROTE THE FIRST LINE OF THIS POEM WHICH WAS NOT SAVED,
AND THESE WORDS WERE ALL THAT I COULD REMEMBER.
Maxine Johnson Bersch-Lovern
Silently, softly, with gentle persistence the snow begins to fall,
And the angels forming the trillion flake blanket
Smile, as they cover the fields and all;
For it falls on the orchards and down on the meadows
And the house will soon be a picture of white!
Stark lines mark the sky where stand the tall trees,
Each twig outlined in an artist’s delight!
All are covered completely—a feast for the eye,
And the barn! Thank goodness the logs are huge!
Inside, it is warm; it is snug and dry,
The animals are finding a blessed refuge!
As the work of invisible Hands from the sky
Fill paths to the places we go,
To the cellar, the smokehouse, henhouse and barn,
All the brothers will be shoveling snow.
Still there’s taffy to pull and there’s cocoa to make,
There are chestnuts to roast in the fire.
There are stories to tell, there are games to be played,
Of the stories we never tire.
We beg for the giant tale;, the ghost tales that scare,
The Crazy Engineer of the Train,
Goblins that lurk, someone’s at work,
And moaning and groaning with pain.
We listen, we hear, the dragging chains near,
We shiver, we shake in dread,
While outside, in the snow-covered world, silence
Reigns supreme on its cold ground bed,
But by the fire, inside, there’s the sound of a household
Where happiness rules in full l sway.
Four girls and three boys! A mother and dad,
And fun around the fire is the way!
Snow pure and white, what a wonderful treat,
A bowl of it is to the tongue!
With vanilla, sugar and cream we did eat,
Snow ice-cream we called it, when young.
My memories of sister IRENE flare up
And I write this to honor her name,
To finish the poem she wrote of the snow,
Which I lost, but never her fame!
My beloved sister she stays in my heart
My playmate, my teacher, my friend,
And from this place she will never depart
‘Ti Jesus brings this life to an end.
For in sixty years of the time we had
There were no cross words to mar
The sweet and precious sister- love
That was my guiding star.
No harsh or critical thing was said,
I wonder how it could be
That she was able to always say
Just what was right for me!
Well, now, today, I wanted to read
That poem describing the snow,
And I wanted so much to talk to her,
As we did so long ago.
I wanted to take a basket of apples
And go upstairs to bed,
And read the books and laugh and talk
About the things we had read.
I wanted to hear her funny remarks
And add my own to the chat,
We whiled in hours that way, you see,
And we always gave tit-for-tat!
I am shedding the tears as I write today
For sister-love cannot be lost,
Enduring and reaching to heaven it is,
Never counting the cost.
I am in need of it today
To give me zip and zing!
I need Irene to make me laugh
And make me want to sing!
There are millions of stars as the old verse said
And flowers in the purple clover,
But another Irene cannot be found
In all the wide world over.
And thank the Lord I am nearer now
Than I’ve ever been before,
Nearer the Father’s house
Nearer that open door!
Thank the Lord for the time he gives
To finish the work He assigned,
And thank the Lord for strength to write,
And thanks for a healthy mind.
And thanks again for the thoughts on snow!
For thoughts of home and kin,
Forever in our hearts to bring
The beautiful memories in.
And give a color to my words,
To paint the snowy scene
That you have given me today
As a message from sister IRENE!