Friday, September 19, 2008

Wilma Elizabeth McDaniel

The Ordinary Poet

Wilma Elizabeth McDaniel escaped the Dust Bowl and survived the Great Depression with her family. She wrote about everything beautifully simply prolifically. I love her work. I hope you do, too. She was 88 years old when she died on April 20, 2007.


No alternative route

only one road leads from


and every town

I pass through

is a place where someone

I have loved

died much too young



and Malibu, California

Medford, Oregon

and El Paso, Texas

heaven forbid that

I should ever stop in

Boise, Idaho


This is not a poem.

It is cold fact.

Five of my brothers.

All young.

Dustbowl Doxology


it was

is now

and ever shall be sweet

in memory

of wild walnut trees

at the spot

where curving banks


the faithful Merced River

and the sound of young

Sunday picnic voices

drifted downstream

Go here to read more about one of my favorite poets:

Happy birthday to Donald Hall. He turns 80 tomorrow.


Note from Diane: this week's Poetry Friday Round-Up is at author amok, where we also get a look at the forthcoming Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival.

1 comment:

Mur said...

Thanks, Jet, for introducing me to W. E. McDaniel's poetry.