Very pleased to share this update from poet/artist Nancy Canyon:

I am thrilled to announce that as of May 1, 2022, I’ve accepted the position of Whatcom Land Trust poet selected by Writing the Land: A Collaboration between Poets and Protected Lands.”

A project of NatureCulture,Writing the Land partners with land trusts across the U.S. Poets visit their adopted properties and then create poems inspired by the land, with an anthology published at year’s end. Through the anthologies, poets help raise awareness of the importance of land conservation.

My adopted land is the Land Trust parcel, Todd Creek, on the Nooksack River. My husband, Ron Pattern, is a steward for this parcel, so I have visited the property numerous times, writing poetry while he planted trees or removed invasive species. I’ve enjoyed the river and rocky beach, the large maples, eagles gliding over, and fish jumping.

Being a poet for the land is a perfect fit for me. It brings me joy to observe nature, detail place in my poems, absorb the aerosols from the woods and negative ions from the water, watch the sky and wildlife, and perhaps eat a picnic next to the river.

In my year of writing poetry at Todd Creek, I will pen three poems for the program and record myself reading a poem for the Writing the Land website. Whatcom Land Trust also has suggested I give a poetry workshop and perhaps read my poems at a pub night fund raiser for Whatcom Land Trust’s upcoming land purchases. Stay tuned for news about these events.

Hunchbacks*

January 23, 2022


2021 Walk Award
by David P. Drummond

We launched where
pioneer cabins gathered
long, glass and resin craft
of ancient organic design
Hidden ruby-colored bark
in their alder shoreline stance
Hangs of strobili and catkins
unto a river mirror move
Tar paper flaps, spirit bird
and whistle-call from eagle
Southpaw slough steerage
past woody debris, of flood water

A rest on cedar springboard
grey-blue feather dreads
trench coat trundle
after scale-leg and bare toes
Whisper paddle alerts
his golden-eye, sabre-
beak stare, at ‘yakers
Vanguard sentinel for
shaggy-squawk flock
of Jurassic fly-a-ways
Nooksack nobility flushed
from sleepy longhouse hide

*Copyright © 2021 by David P. Drummond. Broadside illustrated by Angela Boyle.

Poet’s bio:
David P. Drummond gives attention to insights from Our Universe and shares them in poetry, classes and discussion. You can read him in: Clover, Whatcom Watch, and the Noisy Water and Solstice anthologies. He also enjoys fresh perspectives with open-hearted people via WWU/ALL, WA Department of Ecology, Coastal Forest Merlin Project and beyond. Inspiration for this poem: “Seeking a shared outdoor odyssey, we kayaked the slow-flow of the Nooksack River to its confluence with Bellingham Bay. Here is a ‘slice of my senses’ experiential on our Time-Space Continuum.”

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