Keystone Groundhog’s Day

Tomorrow—that’s 2 February—
Is, well, Groundhog’s Day

And since I am in Pennsylvania,
Maybe I should say something
(Maybe not)

The groundhog is a creature
With variants: prairie dogs out
West (USA), like Texas
Armadillos in attitude and in
Treatment, so I’m told

Nuisance-being that somehow
Makes a hole we all attend to
On this day

Origins are fought over (the day,
That is, not the groundhog
Itself, made in the perfect,
Chortling humor of the mind
Of God), though likely it’s a time
And rite of spring brought up
Into present cultural moment

There is a town, and here it is
(Here’s how it’s spelled)

Punxsutawney (too bad—Spell-
Check defeated me again, this
Year by only one letter)

Here in top hats people (not
The beast—and I don’t know
Why anyone wears the hats)
Will withdraw the toothy animal
From its artificial den atop a
Hill in or near the town (pardon
Me, the borough, there being
No towns in Pennsylvania,
Municipally speaking, save one
Town for another day)

And then winter’s prophecy-
Predictor takes over the day via
Shadow—and that’s all

But I like the day because, unlike
Christmas or Easter or Thanksgiving
Or Memorial Day, we have not
Wrecked this one

There are no Groundhog-Day cards
(I know of), so you must make your
Own—and thus enjoy the day (or

Maybe not) in whichever way you

(Legend has it that on this morning, if a groundhog can see its shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter. If it cannot see its shadow, spring is on the way.

ShenandoahNPS / / CC BY via Google Images