Sample Poems

A Walk by the Pond

~ for a Great Blue Heron rising

Dusky sun slants on slow, gray water.
A ruffling in the brush, a swoop of air,
a delft raincloud raises its fringed cape 
and pulls forward as pewter wings arc wide.

A form, ancient and wild, rises. 
Gangling legs trail as leathered sinews stretch. 
Prussian-hued feathers, fold, extend, sweep, 
ess-ed neck reaches and recoils into hunched shoulders.

The wing does its work. 
Yellow beak arrows toward the low sun, 
one thin black streak streams back from the crest. 
Narrow head tilts, lifts,

The great blue bird bursts gravity’s grip 
and makes for the cobalt clouds.

Lorrie Wolfe,
1st Place, Poetry Society of Indiana Award
Published in ENCORE – 2021


In the beginning the earth was unformed and void.

On the first day I was a child playing alone in the sandbox. 
On the second day I met you, and the world 
shifted just a little. 
On the third we conceived sons who were born in great waves of wonder. 
On the fourth they grew tall and waved goodbye as they left 
for college and the world. 
And on the fifth we held grandchildren high in the air 
and measured their progress in pencil on the closet doorframe. 
On the sixth day we grew gray, wrote poems and went for walks that took forty years. 
On the seventh day we rested on memories and laurels and riverbanks.

And whatever shall we do 
next week, my dear?

Lorrie Wolfe
2nd Place award, Boardwalk Gallery,
Published in The Paths We Take

The Language of Crows

When you are far 
I hear you in the language of crows 
calling dawn into the lightening sky,
inky night distilled 
into feathers, wings, 
onyx eye.

In memory I see you 
clamber across branches 
after chittering squirrels 
and teasing crows. 
Watch your feet, I say, 
a talisman against broken bones.

Now you can name 
every muscle and bone 
that held you strong, 
high enough to see 
the whole world 
as you perched 
in the maple's red canopy.

You are fully fledged. 
Now the mountain holds you, 
bestows its old knowledge 
to your fingers, your sinews.

Listen, it says. 
I will tell you 
what you have always wanted to know, 
in the language of seasons, 
of tea, 
of silence.

When words fail 
I still hear you 
in the language of crows.

Lorrie Wolfe
Editor’s Pick — Published in Pooled Ink

Cottonwood Warning   

for Emily Dickinson

“A foolish tree, to dote on summers gone…”
from “Winter Leafage,” by Edith Matilda Thomas, 1887

This dead cottonwood haunts me, warning, 
take nothing for granted. 
Spring is not given to all. 
Burgeoning is not a demand we can make to the gods. 
There is no summer glory 
for trunks wrapped in Lethe’s embrace.

Standing silver among its supple sisters, 
did it choose to renounce the effort of blooming? 
Or did the cold gods decree, 
“This is your time to forget the flutter 
of malachite, emerald, jade.”

Hope is not the thing 
with feathers, but leaves, argent,
reaching for the rain.

Lorrie Wolfe
Finalist for ACC Writers Studio prize