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New Hampshire Poet Showcase
From NH Poet Laureate, Pat Fargnoli

At my request, The NH Arts Council is providing me with a link to the poet laureate page on their website in order that I may showcase poems by a number of New Hampshire Poets. The poets will be by my invitation only, but I plan to include both the famous and the less famous ....those who are seriously working at poetry craft from many areas of the state. A different poet and poem will be presented every 2 weeks.

Featured Poet: Scott T. Hutchison, Gilford

Scott HutchisonNamed New England Poet of the Year for 2001 by the New England Association of Teachers of English, Scott started and served as Director for the New Hampshire Young Writers' Conference until this past year.  He is a member of the rotating faculty of the New England Young Writers' Conference. Has taught English and Creative Writing at Gilford High School since 1987.

About his featured poem, Scott writes:

After reading a story about the actual Fisherville (which came together in Wolfeboro) in the local newspaper, I knew that it was a story-and a poem-important to New Hampshire. Sitting down to write, it felt like I could see all of those wonderful people and their bob house village out on the ice of the Big Lake.

                           --Incorporated Nov. 1940,
                                  melted April 1941

Three dozen bob houses anchored on the ice
of Lake Winnepausakee. My grandfather said ownership
was but the invention of laughing minds, it appeared
on signs above the doors: "Municipal Court,"

"Town Hall," "City Newspaper," "Jail." For himself,
he'd stuffed the ballotbox, rose to "mayor"--everybody
knew, but that was Fisherville. I asked him if the war
came to that town. He eyed me, smiled, began by saying

the ice was 16 inches thick, men of the old guard with time
and patience had no problems traveling. I watched his hands
widen the air, measuring off a salmon that fed twelve
good fellows. He said talking still made his lungs ache--

an old dosing of mustard gas; he carried splinters in his palms
from exploding trees while performing his duty in the Argonne Forest.
He wanted to tell me that was his war, WWI, the "Great One"--
coughed instead, smiled. The world on the bank said he

and his boys were living a grand fisherman's joke. Gramps
instructed me to put emphasis on the first word in "real estate,"
he dipped fingers into his drink--I held out my hand,
grasped the ice cube he put there, in spite of the cold pain,

until he finished speaking. When the town of Fisherville died,
sunshine and warm weather were the only ones held accountable.
But before that: his first duty as mayor was to order the flag
at half-mast for Bill Randolph's boy. My grandfather died

soon after, wanting to provide me with insights on the Argonne,
about war, to the men of Fisherville. I was awarded the flag
from his coffin. And ever since the ice cube melted while he spoke,
I've been trying to tell people it's a simple thing for hands

to lie to the mind about their pain, I remember him saying
that bob houses were slid around every day, seizing
whatever new territory best captured the sun; Winnipesaukee
and the sky had room for them all in '41. Nowadays, each April--

Easter Sunday--a few people gather to recall Fisherville.
Sometimes they row out, sit in boats to tell their parables;
every few years ice-out hasn't come, and people snowshoe
to the spot. I took my boys out there this past Spring.

They asked if that's where he died. I held their hands,
smiled. I told them. It's where he walked on water.

For more information about Scott T. Hutchison visit:


Click here for a list of previous Poet Showcases

Last updated: October 17, 2008

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