The longer day makes a place of light

and light shade,

an airy space of airy flowers,

thin paths of pine straw

frayed soft,

on mossy unraked corners,

fine unkempt corners.

How tell the kind and age

of old friends met new,

leaf and bark and blossom?

Volunteers escaping bed and border cage

of sometime tended grounds?

There are no bounds.

This long looking back

through tangled orchard trees

and downstrewn walls

only leaves the eye to linger

in the light of the longer day.

O brief but endless look.


As your eyes touch, how sing

an old old hill made all now Spring?

—Roland Labrie

This month's poem is by Cape Neddick's Roland Labrie, from his book Reaching for Quiet, which was awarded a New England Book Festival Honorable Mention. He describes himself as a decorative painter and horticulturist who has been passionate about poetry since childhood.

In May, our trees green and our bulbs blossom as we follow spring into an exquisite coastal summer. Poetry in Belfast continues to flourish. Get ready for a full-scale epic poetry slam with beer and wine and a DJ at the Colonial Theater Saturday, May 11, at 8:30 p.m., with a first prize of $100 and an after party at Three Tides. Headline slam artists will be featured as guest talent. The Bell the Cat Poetry Jam, an open reading, happens on Friday, May 17. Signup is at 6 p.m. On Tuesday, May 21, Not Just A Rap Sheet, a program about and featuring the poetry of incarcerated women in Maine will be presented by the Portland Family Crisis Center in the Abbot Room of the Belfast Free Library at 6:30 p.m.

The poetry column is curated by Ellen Sander, the Poet Laureate of Belfast, and open to submissions. Send submissions in the body of an email (not an attachment) to Feel free to use that email address to communicate any questions, requests, suggestions or issues about poetry in Belfast. Poet Laureate office hours are Tuesdays 1 to 3 p.m. in the Belfast Free Library third floor conference room, but if there's no one there by 2 p.m., Po-Lau might leave early.