“An Alaskan Moment” for November 23rd, 2020
Download or Stream “An Alaskan Moment” for the week of November 23rd, 2020.
Today is Monday, November 23rd, 2020
“An Alaskan Moment”
from Aleutian Peninsula Broadcasting in Sand Point
This week in Alaska History:
November 23, 1941 – Two business blocks in Seward were destroyed by fire.
November 24, 1947 – The freighter Clarksdale Victory was wrecked on Hippa Island in British Columbia.
November 25, 1922 – The Alaska Electric Light & Power Company installed a 20-watt radio broadcast station at Juneau.
November 26, 1867 – The first bill was introduced in Congress to organize the Territory of Alaska. It died in committee.
November 27, 1886 – John Charles Sehgers, Bishop of Vancouver Island, was murdered on the Yukon River.
November 28, 1931 – The passenger steamer Alameda of the Alaska Steamship Company was gutted by fire at Seattle.
November 29, 1930 – Operations were suspended at the copper mine at Latouche on the island of the same name.
This week in Alaska History compiled by Robert N. DeArmond of Sitka
Courtesy of the Alaska Historical Society
Now for your poem.
Tom Sexton was Alaska’s eighth Poet Laurate, appointed in 1995. Born in Lowell, Massachusetts, Sexton moved to Alaska to teach writing, founded the creative writing program at the University of Alaska Anchorage in 1970, and served for many years as the poetry editor for Alaska Quarterly Review. The following piece was published in “The Bend Toward Asia” by Salmon Run Press, Anchorage, Alaska, 1993.
by Tom Sexton
While I pour my cup of morning tea,
a dark bird tears at something in the gutter
beneath a streetlight hissing in the sleet.
Hotels send out signals from their ridge.
Once again, I see that homeless woman,
her bruised face holding water like a font,
the police lifted from a plastic tent
hidden in the woods below our subdivision.
Their searchlights sweeping through the underbrush
found the hut of those who fled the sirens.
Not far from here, her ancestors would gather
to net quicksilver smelt, candle fish, that old
women burned in soapstone lamps on winter nights,
their voices coiled in endless shoals of light.