Saturday, June 19, 2004


by Marilyn Taylor

Bailey's Harbor, March 2001

Even after catastrophes like this one,
I've heard it can be done—

that the damp hearth of the senses
can be poked and stirred

until the embers, still breathing
after an old fire, manage a feeble wink

and the low clouds might be at last contained
behind slant pickets of daylight

and the sky patched into something
nearing blue again—spliced, at least,

by a passing osprey riding a downdraft
all the way from the Apostles

just as a storm-door, rattling its hinges
against the late debacle, opens wide

onto a shoreline paved with residual snow,
shimmering like a coral reef.

"Surveying the Damage" was originally published in Wisconsin Poets Calendar: 2003 as well as in Taylor's collection, Subject to Change. Marilyn Taylor has been named Poet Laureate of the city of Milwaukee for 2004 and 2005. She teaches creative writing at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and also offers classes regularly at Woodland Pattern, Alverno, and the UW Extension. The winner of a number of national poetry awards, Marilyn’s work has appeared in over fifty poetry journals and anthologies. Her second full-length poetry collection, titled Subject to Change, has recently been published by David Robert Books. Get your copy at Schwartz Bookshops, Woodland Pattern, on, or directly from Marilyn at


I'm interested in considering your "poems of place" for publication in The Middlewesterner's "Saturday's Poem" feature; send two or three of your best in the body of an e-mail addressed to . Put "Saturday's Poem" in the subject line. Then be patient. I will get back to you about whether I'll use your work or not. Send along a short biographical note and information about where your books can be purchased and I'll include that when your poem runs. There's no payment involved for having your work appear in "Saturday's Poem," but the feature is seen by some high class readers. About seventeen of them, by our current count.

o Dave Bonta, "The Morning Porch" - March 13, 2004
o Robin Chapman, "By the Wisconsin River" - June 12, 2004
o David Clewell, "Depot: Beaver Dam, Wisconsin" - February 21, 2004
o Susan Firer, "The Butterfly Graveyard" - May 22, 2004
o Fred First, "In Living Memory" - April 3, 2004
o R. Chris Halla, "My Prairie Wedding" - June 5, 2004
o Phil Hey, "Spare Tire" - March 6, 2004
o Tom Montag, "February 1, 2001" - February 14, 2004
o Mike O'Connell, "Flatlanders" and "A Farm and a Rainbow" - March 27, 2004
o Colleen Redman, "Tincture Making" - May 15, 2004
o Jim Reese, "Ritual" and "Willing and Ready" - May 29, 2004
o Mark Vinz, "The Old Hometown" and "Midcontinent" - April 17, 2004

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