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To a Poet Dying (not yet old)

January 18, 2013
Shepherdstown Chronicle

The following poem was submitted by Jane O'Callaghan Edwards, in loving memory of the late Ethan Fischer.

We met you going up from the

River on that sweet night

In early March when the moon

hung like a pendant on the breast

Of the sky, when the nights out-

Shone the days;

You told me where the poets meet,

At the Bookstore,

Then you were gone.

Another spring; I traced you to

Your classroom, with honeyed

Oaken floors and creaking desks'

You were teaching Whitman;

I asked about a writer, a book,

Something about poetry

I wanted to etch and carve a poem

For my mother,

Still hovering from that night we

Met you, walking up to town

I heard at a reading

"Poetry on the Walls"

At the 100 year old firehouse in


A friend read for you, a tear and a


Tangling the last lines

Something in your brain, not


Like Lines filigreed, poems spun

In happier times;

Something diamond-hard-

I said a prayer; never got to your


With a poem of mine

You admired..."The air as fresh as


A poem for my grandmother after

Her death.

Now I have carved a poem for you,


Gathered from that sweet night,

When you told me

Where the Poets meet in


Now let our voices tremble

For the poet dying, not yet old.

Sound the drum and weep;

We walked down to see you surely,

Dear Ethan, did you see us

In your starry sleep?



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