Poem by Rufus Collinson

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Ten Pound Island, Gloucester Harbor by Laurel Tarantino January, 2015

Sea Smoke

We awaken in the cold this morning

to find that the sea has become enchanted

and is rising to the sky.

Gulls shine all prismy within the mist

and ultimately lift up too,

wings becoming light.

Everything is rising.

Even on the hardest day,

there is transformation.

 ~ Rufus Collinson

 

Ruthanne (Rufus) Collinson has lived and loved in Gloucester all of her life. She worked for 25 years as Director of Publications for Project Adventure and served as Gloucester’s poet laureate for four years  (2009-2013).

 

 

Poem by Rufus Collinson

Photo by Laurel Tarantino 2013

Photo by Laurel Tarantino 2013

Celebrate Gloucester

Let us go to a high place and look out.

Gulls soar and drift like our spirits.

Trees reach out and spread their dapple and their shade.

Small birds twitter in droves like the beauty of our distractions.

Hills emerge and rocks lounge like beached whales.

The land curves and the sands glisten.

We see everything that keeps and holds, encloses

Coves, forts, quarries, cellars, the bell tower, breakwater

Harbor ramps and wharves and pilings, hulls and masts and lines

Vessels of pleasure and provision

Rooftops, widow walks, chimneys

The language and history of the neighborhoods

The salt of our current lives

We dwell in the spirit of all that swells and beckons and provides

The shining harbor

Steeples, light houses, Our Lady of Good Voyage

Our Man at the Wheel

Coffee shops, bars, restaurants

The aroma of the nations

The endless call of the sea and promise of the horizon

The spirit of Gloucester surrounds and teaches us

How to create Love from Loss

How to look far out and find the possibilities within

How to live close and always see the distant horizon

Celebrate Gloucester and your self

All that you have become

Within the shining city of your soul.

 ~ Ruthanne "Rufus" Collinson

Poem by Rufus Collinson

“Night Windows” by Edward Hopper, 1928

“Night Windows” by Edward Hopper, 1928

Life Behind Lit Windows

Called upon again to drive

The air as cold in my blue van

as the night without

Dinner left behind to its own heat

The cranky engine warms

I settle back and look for life

behind lit windows

Taking the curves wide

I search kitchens for steam.

Blue rooms amber rooms

Upstairs windows shining bright

Edge of cupboard  glimpse of portrait

rows and rows of colored books

Sometimes whole rooms appear

with such lustre of light

such perspective of nook and beam

that I can see back and back

tablefuls of celebration

alcoves of despair.

Tonight I am just a tired driver

taking comfort in the hour of safe return.

People come home

preheat the oven

take a bath

admire the suspension

of spirits in a crystal glass

drink them in.

 ~ Ruthanne (Rufus) Collinson

Ruthanne (Rufus) Collinson has lived and loved in Gloucester all of her life. She worked for 25 years as 
Director of Publications for Project Adventure and served as Gloucester’s poet laureate for four years
(2009-2013).

A note from Ruthanne Collinson:

Being Poet Laureate is such a great honor and blessing to do what you love for the place that you love. I worked with the schools and the senior center; and, in addition to the Poet Laureate column in the Gloucester Times. I wrote poems for city events. I loved working with the schools. I would take the students on silent walks and then bring them back to the classroom and have them write what they saw and felt. It was always Amazing. I met many wonderful people through the Poet Laureate column as well.