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Linda Hamel

About this Christian Poet:
My home for the past several years has been Ontario, though I was born in the U.S. and spent about 10 years in Latin America. I think I have always been fascinated with language. I sudied literature and linguistics in university, wrote a little poetry as a young adult, and then turned my atttention to Christian ministry pursuits and raising a family.

I wrote this poem as part of a poetry course; the assignment was to write a self-descriptive piece using the line "I am...." I remember being stymied for quite a while.  in my discouragement I gazed out at the gloomy Ontario weather and thought, "I am February." The more I worked with it, the more suitable it seemed.

Self Portrait

My winter sisters preen their smooth white gowns
but I am February
I don't fuss
just pull on
the same old
sweatshirt grey

They tried to trim me with a Valentine
it doesn‚t suit
this drab face
I keep my
own heart hid

I do not offer festivals or flowers
plain sturdy food
will serve

My gift is being

But underneath
my frozen bark the new sap creeps
and days behind the laden clouds grow long.

                   Copyright©2003 by Linda Hamel