“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.

Subject matter is unlimited, but poetry featuring or specific to What- com 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.

Boris Schleinkofer, poetrywatch editor



by Carole Slesnick

A familiar world
a further divide
men making decisions
   for women

back to the future
stagnant history

some use faith
as their guide
some use faith
   for other purposes

it would be funny
if it weren’t so very sad.


Carole Slesnick is a former science editor for Scott, Forsman & Co. Carole is happy to be in Bellingham.



by Rick Hermann

The tongues of all children come together
like rivers joining into a single voice.
Strong currents pull hard.
The sky winks rain onto our dry earth, maybe not

soon enough for a new generation
of stewardship. Have we, the elders, forgotten
the language that we spoke as children?
Knowing, reciting the songs of the rivers

was a part of living in the world.
When children play, the world opens its heart.
When they suffer, too often they are forgotten.
Rain calms the fire within and without,

creates brittle peace
across the vast watershed
we took from the first, vanished
stewards of our common lands.


Rick Hermann lives and writes in Bellingham. His house is attached to a catio.



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