Welcome to Sunday Morning Lyricality, featuring a weekly song or poem by a Minnesota writer. Our current guest editor is Susan Thurston.

My heart and home are in harvest mode and the lens named gratitude is the one used in choosing this month’s Sunday selections. The pandemic tempers this first of the five installments. Here we are called to honor and celebrate the passage of time with all of its risks and rewards, and to declare the boundaries that save us and bring us together in the future.

Susan Thurston

We come again to the cabin in the spring
Karen Herseth Wee

as ice on the lake goes out and loons arrive to call
in the night and tiny blooms on the forest floor push aside
yesteryear’s dry oak leaves in the month that my body
–first-ever gift from mother and father–
turns eighty on its grinding tectonic plates of ribs clavicles spine and hips
some in the geographic terrain I inhabit will feel the seismic-seven quake
as I absorb the idea of eighty years the danger in being this old

to those whom I love I suggest you stand back six feet or more–
like many souls in COVID-19 Years 2020 I’ll manage alone this last
unknowable part banging pots and pans from my windows in thanks for this
frightening birthday and for lifesaving help from family friends and strangers.


Karen Herseth Wee, South Dakota cowgirl, artist, mother of artists, and transplant to academia, is a founding member of Penchant (Northfield Women Poets). Her published work includes The Book of Hearts (Black Hat Press 1993), Baksheesh journal and poems, and inclusion in Absorb the Colors, A Rich Salt Place (1986), Tremors Vibrations Enough to Rearrange the World (1985), and Penchant (2007).

“We come again to the cabin in spring” by Karen Herseth Wee appears with permission of the poet.