“National Poetry Month” #3: Julie Joosten

Ghost Species

Henry David Thoreau would describe the seasons, listing

the flowering times of wildflowers around Concord Massachusetts (1851-1858).

It continues today: the data, the occasional field, the wildflowers, declining.

Temperatures warm, and surviving species flower now about seven days earlier than they did in the mid-nineteenth century.

Species sensitive to temperature have been best able to survive, best able, perhaps, to maintain synchronicity with other plants, pollinators, and predators.

The ghostliness of seasonal change, an orchid coming to flower overnight.

Species unresponsive to temperature have decreased in abundance.

Lapsing species become, for a moment, ghosts,

place-faithful, they persist after the ending of their environments.

Exiled in stillness, then, in a moment, slipping out of life.

We like new adventurous poets. Julie Joosten’s first book, Light Light will appear from BookThug this fall, and we like it lots. So we thought that we’d share a little from it while we’re busy working on the book. Enjoy!

JULIE JOOSTEN lives in Toronto. Her first book of poems is forthcoming from BookThug in fall 2013 and her poems and reviews can be read in Jacket 2, The Malahat Review, and The Fiddlehead.

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