Masinasin Post Office

May 10, 2010 at 5:28 pm (Uncategorized)

My picture for this week’s Poetry Bus came from The Galt Museum Archives which collects and preserves information of permanent value to the study of the human history of Lethbridge and southwestern Alberta. It shows Mrs Elizabeth Blust at the doorway of the Masinasin Post Office. I found this challenge very difficult but resisted the temptation to find a new photograph and stuck with the picture that I was ‘given’. i have tried to capture something of what I imagine to be a hard and unchanging life.

The shade offers no  relief

in the afternoon sun

she can almost hear

the desiccated scrub grass

crackling in the heat

dust coats her skin

heat dries her lungs

slowly suffocating.

She watches as days drift gently by

with the turning seasons

marked by crops failed

or newborn babes.

The outside world touching


distant messages,

as if from beyond the grave

bring news

that changes nothing.

She bides her time

and endures.



  1. Titus said,

    Considering you suggest you were not too inspired by your “luck of the draw” picture allocation, this is a wonderful poem.
    So many suggestions in the descriptions of the bigger life led in this landscape, all beautifully integral to the whole, and the picture. I loved the “slowly suffocating” and

    “The outside world touching
    distant messages,
    as if from beyond the grave
    bring news
    that changes nothing”

    Basically, just loved the writing!

    • crazyfieldmouse said,

      I was trying to bring in the fact that she was the post master, letters being their source of news from the wider world, but a world that must have felt so far removed from their lives.
      Then afterwards I felt i had given too negative a picture and that maybe their resourcefulness and self reliance was to be admired and almost envied.
      Thanks so much for your visit and comment

  2. Argent said,

    I thought you captured the idea of nothing really changing really well.

  3. Mr totalfeckinEEjit said,

    To read allthat into such a simple photo is a majestic feat of imagination. You captured this image in those words and flew!

  4. Enchanted Oak said,

    This was marvelous! You did a wonderful job of bring that photo to life. I’m sorry I missed it last week, but better late than never….

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