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Monday, May 14, 2012

Captain Meriwether Lewis and the Great Falls

"Meriwether Lewis at the Great Falls" by Charles Fritz.

Captain Meriwether Lewis and the Great Falls
by Aaron Poochigian, a selection from his book "The Cosmic Purr."

I was the one, the first white man, to shiver
into the wind of it – a rush so grand
it felt like God was barreling downriver.

I was the fool who marked in a clear hand
its height and spate, certain that words would claim
what savages had only scratched in sand.
I was an ass to fix it with a name.
What was the use? The blasted thing went on
thundering Shush! to spite me all the same.

After the portage, I sat up till dawn
ignoring what was missing, since I knew
that part of me had quit the corps and gone

to serve there, hushed and worshipping the view,
no matter what we went on to subdue.

Aaron Poochigian was born in 1973. He attended Moorhead State University from 1991 to 1996 where he studied under the poets Tim Murphy, Dave Mason and Alan Sullivan. He entered graduate school for Classics in 1997 at the University of Minnesota. After traveling and doing research in Greece on fellowship from 2003 to 2004, he earned a Ph.D. in Classics in 2006, and now lives and writes in New York City. His translations, with introduction and notes, of Sappho’s poems andfragments were published by Penguin Classics in 2009. His translations of Aeschylus, Aratus and Apollonius of Rhodes appeared in the Norton Anthology of Greek Literature in Translation in the spring of 2009, and Johns Hopkins University Press published his edition of Aratus’ astronomical poem, The Phaenomena, with his introduction and notes, in the spring of 2010. His poetry has appeared in numerous journals, including Arion, The Dark Horse, Poetry and Smartish Pace.

For more information visit Aaron's Poochigian's website.

1 comment:

  1. I like this dramatic exploration of the adventurer exploring beautiful places of the Earth.