On Poets, Chinook Salmon and Dahlias

Returning by sea to Seattle. Mount Ranier 87km from Seattle is seen in the background.

Christopher Merrill read from his poem Pike Place Market Variations the night he visited Bahrain.

His contemporary poem captured our visit to the Pike Place Market in Seattle.   With his permission I used his words to describe my memories.

"O savor of salt and salmon--the holy and nomadic Chinook neatly filleted in ice; The King and Coho caught by a troller..."

"The fishmonger, fattened on fried clams and beer batter, brandishes his knife at the cat on the counter."

"A woman in culottes buys ferns and freesias at the flower shop,..."

"..Then roams around the crowded block, reading menus, a mark for the moneyed and the saved."

"Aboard the listing Walla Walla, the ferry stalled in the Straits of Juan de Fuca, nervous passengers scan the deep for whales, and the crew applauds the antics of the gulls and grebes."

"A drunken couple waltzes up the block, believing their good luck will never change. The sign above them--MEET THE PRODUCER--reels in the first stars."

Mr. Merrill said “how I love, and miss, Seattle.”

Quotes from Pike Place Market Variations published in Christopher Merrill’s book Watch Fire.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Sarah F.
    Dec 19, 2011 @ 20:42:14

    Lovely photos, Eva, but what caught my eye was the (relatively low) price for fresh sockeye salmon. Wish I could shop at Pike Place!


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