Poetically Yours Ep. 35 - Carroll County Poet Remembers An Old Friend

Apr 2, 2021

Welcome to WNIJ's Poetically Yours. Poetically Yours showcases poems by northern Illinois poets. Today's segment features poems by Jan Bristol. 

Bristol is a native of Carroll County, Illinois who says she has Mississippi River in her blood. She spent many years in Colorado, but came back home, to what she describes as "along the river and palisades."  Bristol retired from the aerospace industry and is also a member of the writers' group E-town Scribes.

Here are two of Bristol's untitled short poems.

Untitled 1

I remember when

you wove beauty from the sky

in purple hues and bands of green

and gold,

A woman of passion and fire,

who painted the Sangres, who drank

deeply from mountain streams.

I long to see you take up

your brushes and your loom once again,

old friend.

The West has become a faded memory

behind your eyes.

Banked fires hold the heat

of youth,

of memory and desire...

You live now among green hills

and fields unbroken by time


in a cocoon of memory'

mute, with tales untold.

Untitled 2

A ghost-eyed dog

trots across an open field

lately crew-cut of its corn,

brown stubble and rich clay exposed


Plump gray clouds hoist their heavy sails

into a southwest wind.

The barometer drops.


An empty rocker on the porch

keeps time as a pair of red-tailed hawks ride the



It is deep down in the fall

and we hunker down with strong

hot coffee,

anticipating the coming winter

and hoping for the best


  • Yvonne Boose is a current corps member for Report for America, an initiative of the GroundTruth Project. It's a national service program that places talented journalists in local newsrooms like WNIJ. You can learn more about Report for America at wnij.org.