by James Scott Smith, from the collection The Expanse of all Things

Red Winged Blackbird sang
of the expanse of all things,
of the sacred emptiness of plain spaces.
I walked beneath
his melodic teaching three mornings
as if I needed to hear it again
and once more.
The dogs appeared
to have the lesson well in hand
though I struggled
to hold it long enough
to bring it to heart.
I still have many suspicions
so, Blackbird sent me
around and rapt on the trail
as he loosed into a northerly squall.


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James Scott Smith

James Scott Smith


Over the course of his life, James Scott Smith has lived in Michigan, Massachusetts, Kansas, California and for the last 23 years, Colorado. He studied psychology and religion while beginning his work as a psychotherapist, a wilderness guide, and a spiritual leader. He went on to create and lead a system of learning organizations designed to deliver holistic, experiential intervention in traditional and alternative settings. Breaking from his formal career in 2006, James enjoys his family and home life, the Colorado backcountry, his dogs, photography and writing.