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Louise Bogan

(August 11, 1897 – February 4, 1970 / Maine)

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Last Hill in a Vista


Come, let us tell the weeds in ditches
How we are poor, who once had riches,
And lie out in the sparse and sodden
Pastures that the cows have trodden,
The while an autumn night seals down
The comforts of the wooden town.

Come, let us counsel some cold stranger
How we sought safety, but loved danger.
So, with stiff walls about us, we
Chose this more fragile boundary:
Hills, where light poplars, the firm oak,
Loosen into a little smoke.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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  • Rookie - 393 Points Michelle Claus (4/7/2014 3:24:00 PM)

    I'm hearing in this poem how we once lived more in sync with nature, more outdoors. Suburban and urban lifestyles - human-made villages, as it were - remove us from our origin. Not sure about loosen into a little smoke. Is she referring to houses made of poplar and oak, with smoke issuing from chimneys? Or maybe our nature-communion past is up in smoke, a vanishing memory? (Report) Reply

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