I Am Here

Words and Image ©2017 Clarence Holm

I am here under sky
   That is endless.
I am part of the horizon
   That calls to me.
The wind that is blowing
   Across the prairie,
Is just one part
   Of me.

Some may call this land empty,
Pass through and never see
The majesty of tumbling thunder
That is part of life’s journey

In Loving Arms


4 Generations – Myself, My Mother, Grandmother, and Great-Grandmother – On the Dakota Prairie, Summer 1953

Those sweet memories
Of the way it used to be
When I was safe in my mother’s arms
On the infinite Dakota prairie.

Where life could be hard
And money was in short supply.
But, love would surround me
While adversity passed by.

Passed between these ladies
I clung to their arms
Knowing they’d protect me
From dangers on those family farms.

They were with me when I was young
Advising, suggesting, sometimes stern.
Leading protectively on the long dusty roads
Teaching me lessons, they hoped I would learn.

                                                                                       -Clarence Holm

Prairie Ribbons

Rusted steel ribbons spiked down on creosote ties
Connected dreams to ambitions with dollars and a note.
Silver tracks pointed westward reflecting bright prairie skies
Passenger trains paused at despots allowing bankers to promote

Crowds listened closely seeking a regions familiar word
Stories filled with promises, backed by early settler’s success.
Distributed by first year explorers, repeating what they heard
Hard work is the moral, no one suggested less.

Land is turned by team or yoke and planted with desire
Potatoes are set deep in the furrow to break the age old grass
A hardy root to feed the farm and any extra buyer
A fitting meal for a prairie home, to make a season pass.

Dakota winters came and go, silver tracks remain just there
And each few years more neighbors left, seeking changes in the setting.
But some prairie homes were built to last; sod walls still enclose the stair.
A solid foundation held their dream and a life with no regretting.

– Clarence Holm