Friday, November 20, 2015


by Rosemerry Wahtola Trimmer

Video published Nov. 18, 2015: Mohamed Abdeslam, brother of suspected Paris attackers Salah and Brahim Abdeslam lit candles and placed them on the window sill of his home during a vigil in Molenbeek, Belgium on Thursday, in solidarity with the people of France.

In the snowy wallow beside the road,
the elk do not move. Twenty or more.
The blue light of morning makes them blue.

It would be easy to drive past them
without noticing. How much do I miss
as I move through the world?

On the news, they speak of a candlelight vigil
near Brussels. In my mind, I turn the steering
wheel and begin the drive east to join the crowd.

Never mind the oceans, the wilderness
that separates us. Never mind that we
have never met. I get my candle ready.

The car, however, knows the way to work.
It moves steadily toward the north
past meadows where I notice nothing.

In the oncoming lane, almost all the cars
have their lights on, though by now
it is bright enough to see without them.

We who travel mountain roads have learned
the value of shining whatever light we have
so as not to make more dead.

Oh this light. It’s never enough.
Still this invitation to shine it
as brightly, as often as we can.

Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer’s poetry has appeared in O Magazine, in back alleys, on A Prairie Home Companion and on river rocks. She was recently appointed Poet Laureate of Colorado’s Western Slope used the position to launch “Heard of Poets,” an interactive poetry map of Western Colorado poets. She directed the Telluride Writers Guild for 10 years and now co-directs the Talking Gourds Poetry Club. Since 2005, she’s written a poem a day. Favorite one-word mantra: Adjust.