Three Sonnets

By James Galvin b. 1951 James Galvin
Where I live      distance is the primal fact   
The world is mostly      far away and small
Drifting along through cause and effect      like sleep   
As when the distance      unlikeliest of stems
Bears the unlikely      blossom of the wind   
Engendering our only weather      dry
Except in winter      pine trees live on snow   
So greedy      pulling down these drifts that bury   
The fences snap      the trunks of smaller trees   
If the forest wants      to go somewhere it spreads   
Like a prophecy      its snow before it   
Technology      a distant windy cause   
There is no philosophy      of death where I live   
Only philosophies      of suffering

James Galvin, “Three Sonnets” from Resurrection Update: Collected Poems 1975-1997. Copyright © 1997 by James Galvin. Used by permission of Copper Canyon Press,

Source: Resurrection Update: Collected Poems 1975-1997 (Copper Canyon Press, 1997)

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Poet James Galvin b. 1951

POET’S REGION U.S., Northwestern

Subjects Landscapes & Pastorals, Death, Weather, Living, Winter, Nature

Poetic Terms Sonnet

 James  Galvin


James Galvin is the author of several collections of poetry, including Resurrection Update: Collected Poems, 1975–1997 and X (2003); a novel, Fencing the Sky (1999); and The Meadow (1992), a prose meditation on the landscape of the Wyoming-Colorado border and the people who live there.

Galvin’s work is infused with the genuine realities of the western landscape, while at the same time not shirking difficult questions of faith, . . .

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SUBJECT Landscapes & Pastorals, Death, Weather, Living, Winter, Nature

POET’S REGION U.S., Northwestern

Poetic Terms Sonnet

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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