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Arts & Artists  

New Hampshire Poet Showcase
From NH Poet Laureate, Walter E. Butts

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 continue to showcase poems by a number of New Hampshire Poets. The poets will be by my invitation only, but I plan to include those who are seriously working at their craft from many areas of the state.

Featured Poet: Ellen Hersh, Bradford

Ellen HershEllen Hersh’s poetry and translations have appeared in numerous magazines and journals, including Ad Hoc Monadnock, Under the Legislature of Stars, The Other Side of Sorrow, and the Eckerd Review.  On the rosters of the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts and the Florida Arts Council for many years, Ellen Hersh has been a poet-in-residence in schools, libraries, etc.  Prior to that, she taught modern languages at secondary and college levels.  Since 2003, she has been a member of the Skimmilk Farm Poetry Group, founded and hosted by the late Jean Pedrick.  She holds degrees from Radcliffe College, Yale University, and an MFA in Poetry from the former Vermont College program. 

Ellen and her husband, author Burton Hersh, divide their time between Bradford and St. Petersburg, Florida, where Ellen currently runs poetry workshops for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and other programs.

“Memorial Day Parade” a poem from my manuscript-in-progress, Uncapping the Chimney. shows how a chance sound, the beat of drums at a middle school parade, can trigger a series of images which build into a new vision, a synthesis of past and present, in the consciousness of the narrator.  It also illustrates how a poet needs to stay limber to move backward and forward in time.


For Margery

Your knees all but
graze the slide
of your long brass trombone
as they rise
in time
beneath your purple mini.

Marching leftmost in the front row,
your knees
are knock knees,
my mother’s knock knees.
Your name
my mother’s name,
who loved parades,
the beat of drums
in her stomach.

dogs’ barks,
bike tires crunch on sand
as three stooped veterans,
buddy poppies trembling,
pass this lilac-shaded
bend of country road
leading you,
your horn,
your middle school band,
and row upon row of
young knees, lips, notes, bleats,
wails that shake the clouds,
scatter lilacs everywhere,
wakening the dead.



Click here for a list of previous Poet Showcases

Last updated: August 26, 2009

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