The Poems of Clea Roberts

The poetry of Clea Roberts has been a source of great inspiration since attending a Wordfest session, Into the Quiet, this year.  Every poem is an elegant string of words, sparse but potent.  I am left, after reading, with a sense of wonderment about this world of ours.

Because of the immediacy of social media, I have been able to access other people’s travel, adventure and world exploration over months and years…Nepal, Venice, Spain, Croatia, Haida Gwaii.  I get the sense of how vast our life experiences can be…to eat seafood in Japan, observe the art of the masters in far off galleries, stand at the top of the Empire State building.  I enjoy all of this very much.  It all comes into my home, while I sit in my pajamas at the keyboard, with my cup of coffee on the desk, to my right.

However, nothing moves me more than these poems.  Because somewhere in these images, lies the remembrance of camping with my parents, the smell of woodfires burning, the soft conversations as neighbours drift off to sleep.  The childhood listening.

It was some years ago that I spent time observing this schematic, the scale of the universe.  I realized even before encountering this illustration that just as there are so many more places to explore beyond our own communities, there are a multitude of places to visit in our own intimate surroundings, and to go deeper still, there are internal landscapes to explore.  The universe offers so many compelling and endless possibilities for discovery that it is an easy thing to become fascinated with the world that lives even on the petals of a flower.

The poems of Clea Roberts take me to that beautiful intimate place of connection in a much smaller place, full of limitless possibilities.

In the meantime, for two weeks, I have been observing a single Horned Grebe on a pond, hoping to capture just one focused photograph.  I have watched muskrats frantically building winter homes in the cattails on the north side of the fence while bulldozers plow and reshape former dwellings.  I see miracles every evening as the sun begins to set.


One poem to share this morning…from Auguries by Clea Roberts

If Suddenly My Dreams Are Premonitions

There is music or
there is snow falling
on the white-tailed deer.

They strip the ash berries
with precise, needful tugs.

There is music or
there is the gliding silence
between their hoofbeats
as the wind changes.

An introduction is made.
A small part of me
goes with them.



Once the students had entered, stowed their clothing away and sorted out their groups, I wandered off for a little discovery on my own at the Telus Spark Science Center. I wanted to note a couple of quick points before I head off to bed tonight.

First of all, I was most amazed, as I entered my favourite section, Earth and Sky, by the huge piece produced by Romana Prokopiw.  Poet, author and artist, Prokopiew knit weather through a year and produced a spectacular piece.  I could not move my eyes away from it for quite some time.  And, I suppose that because I can not find much at all, in the way of information about her on the internet, I encourage you all to visit Spark, if only to visit this piece.

I am always captivated by the many jars of bottled water, coloured with natural dyes and pigments to imitate participants favourite sky colours.  The water and light in this corner of the display interplay and create a magical environment.

There were many wonders and discoveries as the day progressed, including composing a landscape, but I was most impressed by the Sky Dome experience in the morning.  I was in awe of the spectacle of our universe…the immensity of it all…the moon, stars, sun, planets and galaxies.  Our planet did, indeed, appear to be a great blue jewel in the midst of endless forever.  So, as a final gesture before I go to sleep, I want to post this here and hope you will take the time to enjoy Carl Sagan’s words.