Featured Poet: Martha Carlson Bradley, Hillsborough
Martha Carlson-Bradley, from Hillsborough, New Hampshire, is the author of Season We Can’t Resist, a full-length collection to be published by WordTech Editions in 2007. In addition, she has written two chapbooks, both published by Adastra Press: Beast at the Hearth (2005) and Nest Full of Cries (2000). Individual poems have appeared in New England Review, Agenda, Alaska Quarterly Review, Carolina Quarterly, Poetry East, Marlboro Review, and other magazines, as well as anthologies, such as The Poets’ Grimm (StoryLine Press). The New Hampshire State Council on the Arts awarded Carlson-Bradley an Individual Artist Fellowship for 2005, and the St. Botolph Foundation awarded her a grant-in-aid in 2000. A freelance editor, she lives with her family at the edge of a state forest.
About her featured poem, Martha writes: I wrote most of the poems for Season We Can’t Resist during a period when I first became intensely interested not just in the natural world but in our human role--for better or worse--within that natural world. The setting that inspired “At the Falls” is Gleason Falls in Hillsborough, where the water rushes under one of the town’s historic stone bridges.
At the Falls
Above the current
fed by summer storms
the ledge and boulders
grow lush in miniature:
as ribbons of weed
shimmy in water,
out from the stone
bursts a trumpet of lichen.
bruise beneath our feet.
This heart-shaped leaf
I almost recognize, stepping clear:
green against black earth
I could come back with guidebooks,
my focus best at close range—
could trace for days, for weeks
the names that grow here,
private—wordless among themselves—
the water so loud we have to shout.
This poem first appeared in New England Review, Volume 20, no. 2.
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