by Categories: poetrywatchIssue:

Boris Schleinkofer, poetrywatch editor

Do You Enjoy poetrywatch? Want to see it continue?

Then please, send your poems to us and let the Whatcom Watch share them with our readership! Seriously, we really do want your roughly 25-line poems (though length is by no means a deal-breaker; it’s how you use those lines.) featuring or specific to Whatcom County and issues addressed by Whatcom Watch like government, the environment and media. Send your poems to: poetry@whatcomwatch.org and let’s make magic happen.

Artwork by Hilary Cole

Poetry has a voice in our community, and the Whatcom Watch is adding to its chorus. You all love poetry, right? Well, here you go! Subject matter is unlimited, but poetry featuring or specific to Whatcom County and issues addressed by Whatcom Watch (government, the environment and media) will likely get first preference. Please keep it to around 25 lines; otherwise, we might have to edit your work to fit. Don’t make yourself unprintable. Send poems and your short, two- or three-sentence bios as a word document attachment to poetry@whatcomwatch.org. The deadline is the first day of the month. Please understand that acceptance and final appearance of pieces are subject to space constraints and editorial requirements. By submitting, authors give Whatcom Watch express permission for first-time publication rights in paper and electronic editions of current or future volumes of Whatcom Watch.

Natural orders

by Timothy Pilgrim

The first decrees — lip-gloss fresh air
we breathe, pixie cut all trees,

dab perfume on winding streams.
Brush a blush on glaciers, floes,

Arctic ice, perm stars lighting up night.
Blow-dry canyons, valleys,

mountain, crags. Mousse mesas,
prairies, all that’s flat. Eye-line crows,

buffalo, deer, their fawns. Wax
the ozone layer until it’s gone.

Thick mascara blots the sun, makes
living in darkness beautiful for us.
Timothy Pilgrim, emeritus associate professor of journalism at Western Washington University, has published over 410 poems. He is author of “Mapping Water” (Flying Trout Press, 2016). His work can be found at timothypilgrim.org.

Back Deck Circus

by Karen Moulton

An upside-down squirrel
clutches the bird feeder chain with one thumbed paw
while the other purloins the prize.

Finches in red and yellow capes,
deftly catch the suet brick
setting it a twirl as they swing
back and forth to their tree limb base.

A yellow streamer shines
on red-headed cardinals
who whistle and skitter
as they tussle for seeds in the debris.

Just a spectator with a front row
seat to this three-ringed event,
I sip my morning tea,
mesmerized by their antics.
Karen Moulton is a seasoned international teacher who spends the school year in Taipei, Taiwan, and summers in Bellingham, Washington. She has had a home in Sudden Valley for the past 15 years.