Saturday, November 12, 2016


T I M      M C N U L T Y


With No Song

Evening in the Tetons,

a single cloud trails north

from the summit,

and the broken walls are etched sharply

in a low angle of light

All night

the canyon will sing

the same song to itself,

and wind will curl

about the ridges and towers

with nothing to promise,

with no song it hasn't sung

for an epoch or two

and nothing new in its pocket

but a handful of sand.

In the Burrow of Night

Early fall on Owl Creek,

the stars step slowly across the valley

and frost circles the tent.

A great gray owl barks and

hoots up the pine woods,

first west of camp, then closer north

then back.

Waking in the moonless dark,

I am, for a moment, a small

pocket gopher or hare — some

long-lingering mammalian kin —

and burrow down into my bag

'against the chill,' I tell myself.


Somehow the delicate

evening sky blue petals

of roundelay bluebells survive

the thick evening frost


and nod only slightly

to the dew drenched morning,

where even the tough

old sagebrush limbs

bow to it.


T I M     M C N U L T Y

Pleasure Boat Studio 

Tim McNulty is a poet, essayist, conservation activist, and nature writer. He was born and grew up in Connecticut's Quinnipiac River Valley and attended Northeastern University and the University of Massachusetts at Boston. There he met poet Denise Levertov who inspired him with her powerful fusion of visionary poetics and political activism. Tim traveled throughout the West after college and settled on the Olympic Peninsula in 1972. He lives with his wife, Mary Morgan, in the foothills of the Olympic Mountains above the Dungeness and Graywolf rivers. A passionate spokesman for the wild, Tim remains active in the Northwest environmental community.

Tim's poetry collections are: Ascendance (Pleasure Boat Studio, 2013), In Blue Mountain Dusk (Pleasure Boat Studio, 1992), and Pawtracks (Copper Canyon Press, 1978). He is the author of ten poetry chapbooks, including: Cloud Studies, Some Ducks, Through High Still Air, Reflected Light, Tundra Songs, As a Heron Unsettles a Shallow Pond, and Last Year's Poverty. 

Tim's award-winning books on nature include: Olympic National Park: A Natural History (University of Washington Press), The Art of Nature (Fall River Press),  Washington's Mount Rainier National Park (Mountaineers Books), Washington's Wild Rivers (Mountaineers Books), From the Air: Olympic Peninsula (Greywolf Publishers), Grand Teton: Where Lightning Walks and Grand Canyon: Window on the River of Time, among others.