|Featured Poet: Marie Harris, Barrington
It seems fitting that Marie Harris be the 2nd featured poet on our Showcase. NH Poet Laureate 1999-2004, is a writer, teacher, editor and businesswoman. In 2003, with the NH Writer's Project, she produced the first-ever gathering of state poets laureate. She has served as writer-in-residence at elementary and secondary
schools throughout New England, written freelance articles for publications including the NY Times, the Boston Globe, NH Sunday News, and Corvette Fever. Harris is the author of four books of poetry--the most recent of which is YOUR SUN, MANNY: A Prose Poem Memoir--and is the editor of several poetry anthologies. Her two books for children are G is for GRANITE: A New Hampshire Alphabet, and PRIMARY NUMBERS: A New Hampshire Number Book. She is currently working on a prose poem project involving America
's first female composer, Amy Beach.
-- Pat Fargnoli
Of her featured poem "Western Grebe," Marie writes:
"As I write poems occasioned by, say, a book I've read or places I've
visited, I often weave my fascination with birding into the lines. This poem
takes that notion even a step further. I was invited to North Dakota and the
second gathering of state poets laureate. North Dakota
laureate, Larry Woiwode, asked each of us to compose a poem on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of the Lewis and Clark expedition. This was my offering."
On any one of his long-strided walks
near the Mandan settlement that first fall,
Meriwether Lewis encountered all manner of shorebirds
and ducks plying the sloughs.
Naturalist, explorer, he shot one of each.
Taxidermist, he sent specimens back East.
Diarist, he described each one shot to the last pinfeather.
I write in my journal
(a letter to you from the West)
...the wind that flattens the tall grass prairie
and keeps blackbirds and meadowlarks low,
deafens foraging waterfowl
to my slow advance.
I am seeing for the first time
for the first time! imagine!
long-legged, blue-legged avocets
giddily spinning phalaropes
the thin-necked grebe with its sharp bill and red eye
So would you, reader,
be my correspondent,
For more information about Marie Harris....