Take Heart 27 March 2013

Posted Wednesday, March 27, 2013 in Culture

Take Heart 27 March 2013

A Conversation in Poetry

edited and introduced by Wesley McNair, Maine poet laureate

The poet Gary Lawless of Nobleboro often honors in his work the purity of the natural world that continues to exist around us, despite the corruption of our civilization. In today’s poem he follows a path that leads beyond destroyed totem poles in Sitka, Alaska, to a wild nature, calling us to join him.


Which World

by Gary Lawless


There is a path

winding between Sitka spruce,

past totem poles stolen

from their island homes,

emptied of ashes and bones,

placed along the trail.

In the distance,

a volcano.

Raven flies

just above the surface of things, bald

eagle watching through

layers of air and water

for the fish

passing through,

shining in the cold

river like light

from another world,

everything moving, everything

moving to

come together, come together and

fall apart, again.

the water rushing.

the heart beating.

I am waiting for you

at the mouth of the river.


Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. Poem copyright © 1998 by Gary Lawless. Reprinted from "Caribouddhism," Blackberry Books, 1998, by permission of Gary Lawless. Questions about submitting to Take Heart may be directed to David Turner, special assistant to the Maine poet laureate, at poetlaureate@mainewriters.org or (207) 228-8263.

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