Vox Populi

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Sam Hamill: Three Poems


Sitting alone

in late summer twilight

sipping cold sake


the obituaries of my friends


To Margaret, the Librarian

It was a librarian

who first showed me

how to properly

open a book.

The rest

is all my fault.


The Oracle

Only the fish who leaps
sees the moon on the water.

Copyright 2018 The Estate of Sam Hamill. From After Morning Rain published by Tiger Bark Press. Included in Vox Populi by permission of the publisher.


Sam Hamill (1943-2018) grew up on a Utah farm. He was Founding Editor of Copper Canyon Press and served as Editor there for thirty-two years. He taught in artist-in-residency programs in schools and prisons and worked with Domestic Violence programs. He directed the Port Townsend Writers Conference for nine years, and in 2003, founded Poets Against the War. He is the author of more than forty books, including celebrated translations from ancient Chinese, Japanese, Greek and Latin. (photo: Ian Boyden)

4 comments on “Sam Hamill: Three Poems

  1. John Balaban
    July 20, 2022

    So glad to see these three poems today.


    • Vox Populi
      July 20, 2022

      Yes, Sam’s poems always bring light to dark places.



  2. Barbara Huntington
    July 8, 2020

    I love that Sam’s posts come up in my Facebook memories every once in awhile. I came to know him late. Somewhere I have a poem I wrote about reading one of his poems on Facebook.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Tricia Knoll
    July 19, 2018

    One wouldn’t have to be a septuagenarium to love these, but as I am, I doubly love them. Thank you for offering them to us.

    Liked by 1 person

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