Snow in the Suburbs

Earth Class took the poem Snow in the Suburbs by Thomas Hardy and converted it to a piece of prose. Here is one version by Ottilie:

Snow in the Suburbs

by Thomas Hardy

Every branch big with it,
Bent every twig with it;
Every fork like a white web-foot;
Every street and pavement mute:
Some flakes have lost their way, and grope back upward when
Meeting those meandering down they turn and descend again.
The palings are glued together like a wall,
And there is no waft of wind with the fleecy fall.

A sparrow enters the tree,
Whereon immediately
A snow-lump thrice his own slight size
Descends on him and showers his head and eye
And overturns him,
And near inurns him,
And lights on a nether twig, when its brush
Starts off a volley of other lodging lumps with a rush.

The steps are a blanched slope,
Up which, with feeble hope,
A black cat comes, wide-eyed and thin;
And we take him in.

A prose version by Ottilie

Every glistening branch is swollen with snow and twigs are creaking with it. Every single fork looks like a frozen duck’s foot. The streets and pavements are as silent as a grave. Lots of flakes seem to have lost any sense of direction they had and are going the wrong way, until they crash into more snowflakes and are shoved roughly back down to earth. All the palings have been filled in by snow and have disappeared in to a sparkling white wall. It feels as though all the life has been sucked out of the world. It is still. A late migrating sparrow alights on our tree, although he’s very light an avalanche starts. Hurtling towards him is a snowball, three times his own tiny size. It descends on him and shoves him off and almost buries him alive! Up he flies and lands again, but his fan-like tail, sets off another volley of cruel lumps, rushing down again.

Our steps are a clean white slide and up it labours a jet black cat, with wide and hopeful eyes.

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