Our Northern Shore

I don't miss the flowers
That barely ever grow
in certain places
I love the most, on this peninsula.

On Lake Superior's northern shore
Where fists of icy water
Pound against a warrior's shield
Of angled sedimentary stone
Never to surrender.

Up in the mountains – Porcupine
On the Escarpment Trail
It's magma formed hill tops – basalt
The wind ­swept tree groves
Oddly twisted, bent and old.

Or underneath the virgin pines
The ancient wood of masts
Decades of fallen needles...loam
As deep as winter snow
Lay quiet, dark and brown.

And by the rivers running north
Down steep rock slides and falls
The spring floods wild
To free at last
The eldest fossil rocks.

MTA Poet Laureate, Jim MildrenJim Mildren is the longtime manager of the Gogebic County Transit system in Ironwood, Michigan at the westernmost point of the Upper Peninsula. He is an avid outdoorsman, bicyclist and runner and enjoys writing about nature and the world around him. Jim traditionally reads a new poem or two at every state transit convention he attends and is considered the Poet Laureate of the Michigan Public Transit Association. He and his lovely wife Ellen reside in Ironwood and have two grown children and a grandson out-of-state who they love to visit whenever possible.

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