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Scott T. Starbuck


We Were All Native Once

Maybe a feather sailing on the lake at dusk
or scent of wood smoke in autumn
finds you thousands of years removed
from the battle cry against bureaucracy.

Maybe a ray of light through a frosty window
or a fragment of a dream of gray tombstones,
gargoyle shapes, colored flowers
works its way back

into your heart
the way a holy irritant of sand
in the darkness becomes a pearl.

Originally appeared in
High Plains Register.



Cranking Up the Organ

An old man in my sister’s church confessed
he was unable to forget
during WWII
when the death train rumbled by
with whimpering children,
broken men and women,
the organist cranked the music louder.

I imagine
night after night after night he dreamed
a gut-shot deer
beneath a roaring waterfall.



In 2004 Scott T. Starbuck was a writer-in-residence at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology on Cascade Head near Lincoln City, Oregon. He recently combined his interest in fishing with clay art, some of which was accepted by The Spirit of the Salmon Fund for the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission at http://www.critfc.org/Gala/the_art.html.

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