Trail Blazer

when there is so much sky
you can’t imagine a difference

shrubs racing alongside
bug speckled panes

and so many clouds
across the vast flatness

of soil

~ Nicole Pakan

Nicole Pakan is an active member of the Edmonton literary community, performing and organizing events around the city. She is the Co-Editor for the international online and print literary journal DailyHaiku. Her recent publication credits include poems in: filling Station, The Prairie Journal, Other Voices, Notebook Magazine, Misunderstandings Magazine, The Toronto Quarterly and blue skies poetry. She was short-listed for the CV2 2-day poem contest for 2008 and was the winner of the 2009 Edmonton CBC Poetry Faceoff.

While exploring the foreign cities and landscapes, I found myself contemplating the concepts of citizen and visitor as well as the implements of travel—boots, car, plane, soil, roadmap, landmarks. The things we pack in our suitcase to remind ourselves of home (that shirt I never wear but always bring) and the things we collect to remind ourselves of where we’ve travelled (the found stones that I can’t bear to leave behind). I think for many writers, the poem is the souvenir.

Read more of Nicole Pakan’s poetry:
The Sand Remembers
4 Days

Editor’s note: This poem is from Home and Away – a sequel to the bestselling Writing the Land (2007). Look for one poet to be featured each day as Alberta poets ponder the question “what is home?” and explore our complex relationship with working on, living with, exploiting and protecting our land and our home. For more information about the project, click here.

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