When the days are the shortest, the nights are the coldest,
The frost is the sharpest, the year is the oldest,
The sun is the weakest, the wind is the hardest,
The snow is the deepest, the skies are the darkest,
Then polish your whiskers and tidy your nest,
And dress in your richest and finest and best ...
For Winter has brought you the worst it can bring,
And now it will give you
The promise of Spring!
from The Secret Staircase by Jill Barklem