Saturday, 22 of November of 2014

Jerry Martien – At The Foot Of The Mountain

 
From an Amazon Review of Jerry Martien’s Book: “A good poet is someone who manages, in a lifetime of standing out in thurnderstorms, to be struck by lightning five or six times.” (Randall Jarrell). If ever a poet fits this description it is Jerry Martien.
 
Lovers of poetry will be forever indebted to Blackberry Books, an independent publisher in Maine, for preserving the musings of this northern California coastline poet.
 
Martien has written poetry for a quarter century and one suspects has spent his share of time in thunderstorms. That he has been struck by poetic lightning there is no doubt.
 
Martien writes of his apprenticeship to place, and poetry, and carpentry, and human understanding and does so in a way that it relates to anyone that will but listen, regardless of their locale.”

 
At The Foot Of The Mountain

Only there–where the water
comes down against rock–
knees of rock, shinbone rock, squat
on heels, rock

set across the creek from my tent
where the water comes down
against this first steep coastal rising
only there–

where water last speaks to rock
the forest
against that rock
water
taking every sound to its numberless song

chain saw rising, whining out of a cut, falling
thump of a log, limbed & bucked & loaded
and where it spills over rocks as if another
truck pulling back up the ridge, empty

only there–
there was no hearing it
only water and the rock where it turns

the water singing
the forest cut down

and there only rock to hear it fall.

–Upper Jacoby Creek
in Humboldt County, California


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