Timothy Pilgrim, poet
High on Adventure's Poet Laureate
Timothy Pilgrim


By Timothy Pilgrim

Books on the way out
(with a nod to Glen Larum)

“My life is all I’ve got.”
    —Richard Hugo in The Triggering Town
Sun on horizon, you read an ending
like Milton’s — gone to blindness,
looking for light. It’s time to flee,

drive highways west — feedlots,
cattle queued, barns, hay
freshly mown, slaughterhouse below.
Finally one runway, control tower
rising like a phoenix from fields,
promising hope, rest not far away.
You wend to town, cruise Main,
pass bars, one lonely church,
ancient stores late in rot.
A pickup rolls by, gun rack full,
pit-bull growling in back, seat-belt
painted on the driver’s shirt

to fool john law. Hotel flies
a huge flag. You stay quiet,
wish your belt would hide iPad

tucked in your pants, deep.
Too tired to sleep, wi-fi coming
next year, you walk the street,

search for books — Hemingway,
Paradise Regained, Silko, Alexie,
Lycidas, anything in ink. 
Night brings black, town cafe,
muddy coffee, charred steak, 
burnt toast — wheat, not white.
The grizzled cook serves a smile,
says bookstore’s at the airport,
past security, on the right.

(published by Tipton Poetry Journal)

Wyoming road and sky
copyrighted Timothy Pilgrim photo: Wyoming road sky








  Timothy Pilgrim, a native of Montana and retired university journalism professor living in Bellingham, Wash., is a Pacific Northwest poet and 2018 Pushcart Prize nominee. His poems have been accepted more than 500 times by journals such as Toasted Cheese, Mad Swirl, Cirque, Santa Ana River Review, Windsor Review, Hobart, Otoliths and Prole Press in the U.S. Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom. He is the author of Mapping water and Seduced by metaphor: Timothy Pilgrim collected published poems, which the back cover calls “a 10 on any Richter imagination scale.”