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Garth von Buchholz

Honorable Mention: 2016 Utmost Christian Poetry Contest $100

About this Poet:
Garth von Buchholz is an author of poetry, short fiction, non-fiction and drama. Over the years, his work has been published in Quills, Every Day Poets, Island Writer Magazine and other magazines and anthologies. Garth is a former journalist, editor and arts critic who has written for many Christian and mainstream publications. He lives with his wife, Helen, and daughter, Tiana, in Victoria, British Columbia.

About this Poem:
Newcastle Island was written in the summer of 2015, immediately after our first camping trip as a family. We were short on provisions and some basic equipment, so it was not quite what we had expected. But absent the ordinary distractions of family life, we became profoundly aware of how much we needed one another.

Newcastle Island and the Irrelevance of Stars

Fireflies hover above the open canopy of our tent––
Ah...they are only stars, not insects. They have no light for me.
Newcastle Island is dark, and smells of seawater and camp fires.
All that touches me is by my side—warm, breathing, dreaming.
The pinpoint holes in the heavens cannot light the colours below,
and my electric torch is more brilliant than any star, because it is ours.
The learned astronomers tell us galaxies are collapsing and
but I feel more heat from your breath than those trillion stellar blazes
Whitman told us he look'd up in perfect silence at the stars, and I
have been in awe before, but soon we will visit those endless
and dry our feet on their shores; for now, the barely glowing mortals
beneath the canvas are fragile as moonlight on the waves,
and will shine longer than the faint sparks above.

Copyright ©2015 Garth von Buchholz