“When power leads man toward arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the area of man’s concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses.” — John F. Kennedy

Do You Enjoy poetrywatch?

Artwork by Hilary Cole

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 such as government, the environment and media. Send your poems to: poetry@whatcomwatch.org and let’s make magic happen.

Boris Schleinkofer, poetrywatch editor 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 permission for one-time publication rights in the paper and electronic editions.


   by Steve Hood

Walking tribes on bare feet
of discontents, explorers
left Africa millennia ago,
with thumbs and sharp eyes.

Pregnant women break water,
healthy fetuses grow,
billions of humans live,
eat the world’s treasures.

Single cells float in soup,
clump together into eels,
fish flop onto beaches,
rodents scurry windy fields.

Then Lucy stood up straight
in weeds to see predators,
three million years ago,
dreaming of carbon emissions.

Steve Hood is an attorney, poet, and political activist who has lived in Bellingham since about 2003.


   He fingered the mandolin in the eve

by Daniel McCann

He fingered the mandolin in the eve
as the birds went in for rest
and moon’s light proved enough
by day he split wood roped water from the well
until the sun found its way up the hillside
and settled atop of the trees for a spell
he advanced
traveled about
chewed all he ate
and now sometimes …
he thinks of home
birds and trees
sun on the water
and many nights
his hands on the strings
not a care in the world
just the moon and sky.

Daniel McCann is a poet, writer and truly a renaissance man who has recently relocated to the Pacific Northwest.

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