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Violet Nesdoly

Honorable Mention 2007 Canadian Christian Poetry Contest (Fall): $25

About this Christian Poet:
Violet Nesdoly lives in Surrey, B.C. with her husband and is the mother of two young-adult children. Freelance writing fills her work days. Other poems by her have been accepted and/or published at Utmost Christian Writers, Poets Online (Archive), M. B. Herald, Capper's Magazine, Birds and Blooms, Prairie Messenger, Glad Tidings (Presbyterian) and Time of Singing. Violet's volume of poetry, Family Reunion, is available for purchase directly from her.

Among her many other achievements, Violet Nesdoly was Utmost's International Christian Poet Laureate for 2006 and 2007.

Canadian Rivers

Headwaters drip from snowy melt of mountain glaciers
gurgle down glistening rock faces in nameless rivulets.
Fed by rain and sibling trickles they become sinuous streams
adolescent-eager in descent, unafraid to dash against boulders
froth into canyons, course over rock beds till they reach the flat.

Mature and strong they gouge valleys, meander through meadows
nurture forests, bears and eagles, rejuvenate farms and hamlets
flow regal yet restless through villages and cities
under bridges and over tunnels
ever pressing on to an ocean destination.

The watermark of veins, arteries and capillaries on our maps
they carve their initials, scrawl their signatures
all over Canada: Snake, MacKenzie, Coppermine
Exploits, Hillsborough, Saint John, Margaree, Moisie
St. Lawrence, Red, QuÕAppelle, Athabasca, Cowichan…

Named by Indians and explorers for Indians and explorers
they inscribe the plot lines of our history
hide the gold and call the salmon
propel the ferries, carry the logs, barges and ships
pave thoroughfares for tugboats, speedboats, kayaks, canoes.

We settle beside them for their sustenance and beauty
feel betrayed when, with spring-fevered earthlust
their swift-flowing waters bite off chunks of our land.
Then we fear them, dredge them, soil them,
treat them, drink them, dam them.

I have toe-squished the mud of the South
Saskatchewan, pulled Jackfish from the North
been awed by the HellÕs Gate fierceness of the Fraser
spied loons and cormorants gulping fish on the Nicomekl
otters cavorting in the Serpentine

driven miles beside the Thompson
as it winked at me through clearings
admired the canyons carved by the Bulkley
dreamed the legends of the Kispiox
listened from a tent to the night secrets of the Skeena…

Oh for more lifetimes
to make them all mine.

Copyright©2007 by Violet Nesdoly