Take time, this Poetry Sunday, to listen to Florence Chard Dacey as she communes with the wider world and helps us to understand “the truth of what it means to live here.”  She is a wonderful poet and very good company indeed. –Ed.


After All of My Life

Such a symphony of wind in trees
and boom of waves, this morning after
thunder, rain.  I want to climb
the unfurling birch tree and leap, without thinking.
I want to curl into the cobalt barrel
of the wave and release against these shores.

Such a talking to my face, the truth
of what it means to live here, die here
in each other’s company.
Make everything move, make
this old heart and mind shake
this morning after all of my life
I’ve moved through like a mole,
like a wild turkey lost on the highway.

This is the magic world I never meant to leave.
The lichen are my first sturdy friends and they are many.
Graceful sticks rest across delicate blue flowers
and the dried black flies flutter somehow gaily too, in the web.

My body is a simpler heaviness
on the fire of ancient rock. 
My spirit trembles like hidden seeds.
And in the high torn cloud
a dark ring erases itself.

From Rock Worn by Water, by Florence Chard Dacey, Plain View Press, 2009


Florence Chard Dacey has lived in the small town of Cottonwood in rural Minnesota for 42 years. Through her work as a teaching-artist, she has helped people of all ages write poetry, journals, and life stories.  Her own poetry documents her life as a woman, mother, and lover of the earth.  She currently is working on a manuscript of poems about the upper Minnesota River Valley. Her website is florencedacey.com.

Photo by  Cathie Crouse Bueltel.

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